Poland and Ukraine exchanged ambassadorial summonses to the Foreign Ministry and sharp statements by politicians. The Baltic-Black Sea region is turning into a zone of heightened tension.
Volodymyr Zelensky's peace plan, unveiled in the fall of 2022, was discussed last weekend in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The 10 points, which, unfortunately, are poorly known to Ukrainian citizens, formed the basis for finding ways to resolve the situation. The meeting was noteworthy for the presence of Chinese representative Li Hui, as well as for the opportunity for representatives of the West and the global South to seek common approaches to ending the Russian-Ukrainian war. There were no Russian representatives in Jeddah, and Sergey Lavrov, in his usual manner, criticized the very possibility of discussing the document created in Kyiv. It should be understood that Zelensky's peace plan will undergo transformations, but it is important for Ukraine to demonstrate its interest in ending the war and minimizing its negative impact on the world.
Tensions in Poland related to the parliamentary elections to be held in October were reflected in the political "friendly fire" between Kyiv and Warsaw. The two countries, which are strategic partners and are at the peak of their relations, exchanged ambassadorial summonses and rather loud statements by government officials. It seems that the issue of Ukrainian grain is not the main one in this case. Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki demonstrated increased activity on the communication track with Ukraine due to his leadership in the Law and Justice list and the fight for the right to represent the party in the Polish presidential election next year. It is worth recalling that Poland is not only a hub for providing military and technical assistance to Ukraine, but also a tuning fork in the West's efforts to support Ukraine. Therefore, a pause in the public activity of Warsaw and Kyiv could benefit the climate of bilateral relations.
The need for normalization of Polish-Ukrainian relations is evident against the backdrop of a marked deterioration of the situation in the Baltic-Black Sea region. Two Belarusian helicopters crossed the Polish air border last week and returned with impunity. Lukashenka took back his words about the "Wagnerian excursion to Rzeszow" and emphasized that he did not want Belarusians to fight. Nevertheless, Prigozhin's military-criminal company continues to play on the nerves of the people of Poland and Lithuania. Prime Minister Morawiecki and President Nausėda defiantly met in Suwałki to demonstrate their determination to repel possible provocations. It is unfortunate that there was no Ukrainian representative there, as the relevance of the challenges for the Lublin Triangle has not yet been canceled.
The beginning of August was tragic for Belarusian volunteers fighting in the Defense Forces of Ukraine, six of whom were killed in battles with Russian aggressors. Kastus Kalinouski's regiment held consultations with representatives of the Joint Transitional Cabinet (represented by Paweł Latuszka and Franciszak Wieczorka). On June 6, Warsaw hosted the second "New Belarus" conference, where representatives of Belarusian democratic forces discussed the fight against Lukashenka and the factors that would strengthen their own ranks. Aliaksandr Azarov lost his position as a representative of the defense industry for the restoration of law and order, but retained leadership of the "Peramoga" plan. The Belarusian Democratic Forces in Ukraine will now be represented by Hennady Manko, who has been communicating with Belarusian volunteers from various units for a long time.
Yevhen MAGDA, Institute of World Policy