Farmers who had temporarily halted their protest at the Medyka border crossing with Ukraine in south-eastern Poland during the holiday season are poised to resume their demonstration on Thursday.
The ‘Deceived Countryside’ organization, which had joined forces with Polish truckers in the protest, has decided to reinstate the blockade due to the lack of written assurances regarding the fulfillment of their demands. Roman Kondrow, the organization’s leader, emphasized that without an on-paper commitment from the prime minister, the protest would persist.
Despite Agriculture Minister Czeslaw Siekierski’s verbal assurance that the farmers’ demands would be addressed, the absence of a written confirmation has fueled the decision to restart the protest. Kondrow stated that a press conference near the Medyka border crossing is scheduled for 8 am on Thursday, during which they plan to announce the renewed blockade.
This time, the farmers are planning a more rigorous blockade, allowing only one vehicle through every hour. Exceptions will be made for passenger cars, coaches, trucks carrying humanitarian aid and military equipment, as well as perishable foods. Kondrow explained the skepticism towards Ukrainian claims of transporting perishable goods, recounting instances where supposedly essential items turned out to be tulips headed for Ukraine.
Expressing frustration, Kondrow emphasized that the farmers no longer trust the assurances from Ukrainians and are determined not to be deceived. The farmers initially initiated the blockade on November 23, with demands including subsidies for corn, increased funds for liquidity loans, and the retention of the current agricultural tax level throughout the coming year. Truckers, facing unfair competition from Ukrainian counterparts, have also been blocking border crossings with Ukraine since November of the previous year.