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    Poland’s Grain Import Ban Sparks Controversy: MP Defends Economic Safeguards

    In the ongoing debate surrounding Poland’s decision to maintain its grain import ban, MP from Poland’s governing Law and Justice (PiS) party, Radoslaw Fogiel, has defended Poland’s right to safeguard its economy and agriculture. This comes in response to comments made by Cem Ozdemir, the German food and agriculture minister, who supported the European Commission’s decision to lift the grain embargo on Ukraine.

    The European Commission announced on September 15 that it would not extend the embargo on Ukrainian grain entering several member states, including Poland. However, Poland, Slovakia, and Hungary opted to continue restricting Ukrainian grain imports, leading to a clash of opinions within the European Union.

    Minister Ozdemir accused eastern European countries, including Poland, of selective solidarity with Ukraine, implying that their support was conditional. In response, MP Radoslaw Fogiel countered by highlighting Poland’s significant contributions to aid Ukraine, including financial support, acceptance of refugees, and the provision of military equipment since the start of the conflict. Fogiel criticized Germany’s past actions, such as withholding financial aid and blocking weapon transfers to Ukraine.

    Fogiel emphasized that Poland’s decisions aimed to protect its economy and agriculture, asserting that their priority was the well-being of Polish citizens. He suggested that Germany should focus on facilitating the efficient transit of Ukrainian grain outside the European Union, addressing the issue of grain market saturation caused by land routes through neighboring countries like Poland.

    The grain embargo debate reflects the broader challenges faced by Ukraine in exporting agricultural products following Russia’s withdrawal from a UN and Turkey-brokered grain deal during the summer, leading to increased grain shipments through land routes and causing local market disruptions and farmer protests in several countries.

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