Polish PM Tusk says he will meet protesting farmers on Thursday

By Thomson Reuters Feb 28, 2024 | 7:54 AM

WARSAW (Reuters) – Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said on Wednesday he would meet protesting farmers’ leaders on Thursday, as demonstrations continued across the country.

Farmers across Europe have been protesting for weeks against constraints placed on them by EU regulations meant to tackle climate change, as well as rising costs and what they say is unfair competition from outside the EU, particularly Ukraine.

“I have convened an agricultural summit in Warsaw for tomorrow … I will meet with the leaders of all protesting groups,” he said during a press conference.

“We have a very important problem. We are the most pro-Ukrainian nation when it comes to aid, but we have the biggest problems in Europe resulting from the war.”

He added a current EU proposal to limit the amount of food products arriving from Ukraine to levels from the last two years was “unacceptable” for Poland and it wanted the reference amount to be set at levels from before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

He said that he was ready to take tough decisions regarding the border in consultation with Ukraine.

“I do not hide the fact that we are talking to Ukraine about temporarily closing the border,” he said.

On Wednesday, thousands of Polish farmers took to the streets of Warsaw.

(Reporting by Alan Charlish, Pawel Florkiewicz and Anna Wlodarczak-Semczuk; Editing by Alex Richardson)