Poland's Prime Minister Donald Tusk on Thursday pledged to safeguard aid deliveries to Ukraine as the two countries are set to hold talks on their shared border where farmers' protests have soured ties.

Disgruntled Polish truckers and farmers have been blocking the border checkpoints in recent months over Ukrainian competition and farming imports, igniting tensions between Warsaw and Kyiv.

Ukraine warned on Wednesday that the delays at the border could impede weapons deliveries to the country as it fights off the Russian invasion which is nearing its second anniversary.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday offered to meet Poland's premier at the border to discuss the blockades, which he called a matter of “national security.”


But Tusk told reporters on Thursday that he would only chair talks between the two governments planned for next month in the Polish capital.

“The meeting of both governments will be held in Warsaw on March 28,” Tusk told reporters, adding that it was “better to continue these talks at the technical, organizational level.”

Tusk also confirmed no such talks are planned before March 28, adding that in the meantime negotiations at ministerial level would take place.

'Putin's propaganda'

Tusk also said the authorities in Warsaw would designate the crossings with Ukraine “critical infrastructure” to secure a steady flow of aid to Ukraine.

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“To ensure a 100 percent guarantee that military aid, equipment, ammunition, humanitarian and medical aid will reach the Ukrainian side without any delays, we will include border crossings with Ukraine... on the list of critical infrastructure,” Tusk said.

He added that railways and sections of roads leading to Ukraine would also be added to the list.

Embattled Ukraine relies heavily on military aid from its Western allies, delivered largely through Poland, an EU and NATO country and one of Kyiv's staunchest supporters.


Including the crossings on the list of critical infrastructure would mean introducing “a different type of organizational regime,” Tusk said, without elaborating on whether protests would still be allowed at the border.

A fresh wave of protests by the Polish farmers this week triggered friction between the neighbors after some demonstrators pried open freight cars carrying Ukrainian grain.

Polish police also opened a probe into another incident involving farmers unfurling a banner that read: “Putin, get Ukraine, Brussels and our government in order” alongside a Soviet flag attached to a tractor.

On Thursday, Tusk said Poland will not allow “those who openly and actively serve (Russian President Vladimir) Putin's propaganda” to take advantage of the farmers' protest on the border with Ukraine.

“Any such support for Putin's narrative is high treason, we will not tolerate it,” Tusk said.

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