Poland's Duda urges France's Macron to show NATO cooperation ideas

2019-12-03 17:42 update: 2019-12-04, 21:38
President Andrzej Duda Fot. PAP/Wojciech Olkuśnik
President Andrzej Duda Fot. PAP/Wojciech Olkuśnik
Polish President Andrzej Duda said in London on Tuesday that he would like his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, to show how to improve cooperation within NATO rather than speaking of a "brain-dead" alliance.

Duda on Tuesday attended a session of "NATO Engages: Defence and Deterrence for a New Era," a part of a NATO summit that is being held in London on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Leaders of 29 North Atlantic Alliance countries arrived in London to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the organisation.

The Polish president said that NATO is a key element for stabilisation and security in Europe. He admitted that there are numerous tensions both within NATO and the EU, but "these two alliances, NATO and the EU, are the world's two biggest success stories," he said.

Duda urged Macron to stop talking about NATO being "brain-dead." "Please, suggest what we can do to improve our cooperation in NATO and the EU, and please be specific," the Polish president said, addressing his words to the French head of state.

He also said he believed in a 360-degree approach to security in NATO that would also involve the Sahel region and cybersecurity, the two areas of interest suggested by Macron.

Referring to the alliance's military presence on its eastern flank, Duda said it was NATO's biggest achievement in recent years.

Such a presence is very important for both Poland and the Baltic countries after the Russian invasions of Georgia and Ukraine, he added.

Commenting on Turkey's recent statement that it would oppose NATO's defence plan for the Baltic States if NATO allies did not recognise groups Ankara is fighting against as terrorist organisations, the Polish president expressed hope that the NATO countries would find a good solution.

Duda added that NATO is an alliance of almost 30 countries that have their own interests. "There is a great field for discussion and negotiation," he noted. Duda added that he had spoken with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday.

In his speech at the session, Duda said that the EU and the entire Euroatlantic area is the world's most peaceful region, which has been made possible thanks to NATO. "We want a strong and united NATO," he said. (PAP)