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Monday, 27 January 2014

Polish and Swiss presidents discuss bilateral relations and Ukraine

  |   Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski Swiss President Didier Burkhalter meets Bronisław Komorowski

President Bronislaw Komorowski and his Swiss counterpart Didier Burkhalter, who started his two-day official visit to Poland on Monday, discussed bilateral relations, including tighter economic ties and the need to foster domestic dialogue in Ukraine.

 

After the meeting, President Komorowski stressed that Poland and Switzerland strongly supported the continuation of domestic dialogue in Ukraine and steps that could stop the use of force in the country.

 

Komorowski congratulated President Burkhalter on Switzerland's taking over the leadership of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and stressed that the structure "could be very important for solving crises in Eastern Europe."

 

Didier Burkhalter recalled that last week, as an OSCE representative, he had talked to Ukrainian PM Mykola Azarov in Davos. I told the prime minister that we are ready to assume the role of a mediator, an intermediary, to increase chances for a democratic and peaceful solution of the conflict and avoiding violence, the Swiss president said.

 

He said he was expecting a response on the matter from the Ukrainian government.

 

This is Burkhalter's first visit after he took office as president of the Swiss Confederation on January 1. Bronislaw Komorowski said that the choice of Poland as Burkhalter's first foreign destination confirmed "both sides' will to bolster mutual relations and seek various forms of cooperation."

 

President Komorowski argued that Poland may be attractive for Switzerland as a fast-developing country, while Poland could make use of Switzerland's vast experience in promoting wealth-creation and development.

 

The Polish president also expressed support for the Swiss government in its efforts to reject anti-immigration measures proposed by the Swiss People's Party.

 

He announced he had invited Burkhalter to the 25th anniversary of Poland's first democratic elections marking the overthrow of communism in 1989.

 

President Burkhalter said that although Poland and Switzerland did not share a border, the relations between the countries could be compared to those between neighbours.

 

He underscored that bilateral trade was significant and rising, as the level of trade between the two countries was comparable to that between Switzerland and Russia or India. He also recalled that his country had created some 40 thousand jobs in Poland, making it the second largest non-EU investor in the country.

 

Burkhalter reported that he and Komorowski had also discussed closer ties between Switzerland and the Visegrad Group of States, composed of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, in economic, social and human rights areas. (PAP)

 

 

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