Poland and Israel agree on rules for educational youth trips

2023-03-22 19:37 update: 2023-03-23, 20:18
Zbigniew Rau, Eli Cohen. Photo PAP/Marcin Obara
Zbigniew Rau, Eli Cohen. Photo PAP/Marcin Obara
The head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said on Wednesday in Warsaw that the agreement with Israel optimises and organises rules for Israeli educational visits to Poland.

Zbigniew Rau, speaking at a joint press conference with the head of Israeli diplomacy, Eli Cohen, announced an agreement with Israel regarding the organisation of trips for Israeli youth to Poland and Polish youth to Israel.

"We note with satisfaction that the Israeli side referred to our point of view with understanding and has adopted the Polish position," said Rau.

He added that in the course of almost a year of negotiations, led by the MFA and also attended by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, both sides managed to reach an agreement on several issues. 

"Therefore, the agreement organises and optimises the previously dispersed rules for organising Israeli educational visits to Poland, and also guarantees the Polish side the possibility of organising Polish educational visits to Israel on the same terms," Rau said.

"The agreement closes a certain stage, far from the optimal state, a certain stage in bilateral relations and opens up prospects for balanced, equal and reciprocal relations," Rau added.

In mid-June last year, the Israeli Ministry of Education announced the cancellation of educational trips to Poland for high school students. The Ministry justified its decision on the grounds that problems had arisen which prevented students from being properly and safely informed while traveling. 

According to Poland’s MFA, a return to the previous rules for trips by Jewish youth with the participation of armed Israeli services was not possible.

"We have agreed that the hosting country will be responsible for providing security for Jewish youth in Poland or Polish youth in Israel," Rau said. (PAP)