EU's Donald Tusk warns Poland against 'anti-Semitic excesses'

EU President Tusk warns Warsaw must 'stop the wave of bad opinions about Poland' caused by recent 'anti-Semitic excesses.'

AFP, Arutz Sheva Staff,

Donald Tusk
Donald Tusk

EU President Donald Tusk warned Poland on Friday against "anti-Semitic excesses" and other behavior that risked ruining Warsaw's global standing.

Tusk, a former Polish premier, said he had told Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki on the sidelines of an EU summit in Brussels that negative opinions about Warsaw were turning into a "tsunami."

"I told Mr. Morowiecki that the situation is very serious, it directly affects Polish interests, the reputation of Poland and Poland's standing in the world," Tusk said when a Polish journalist asked him about tensions with the EU.

Tusk said there was a "wave that must be stopped... of very unjudicious anti-Semitic excesses in statements being made in Poland."

Poland's right-wing government has faced an international row over a law making it illegal to attribute Nazi crimes to the Polish state. According to the new law, ascribing "responsibility or co-responsibility to the Polish nation or state for crimes committed by the German Third Reich" could lead to fines or up to three years in prison.

Morawiecki then fanned the flames by saying there were "Jewish perpetrators" as well as Polish ones in the Holocaust.

Deputy Foreign Minister Bartosz Cichocki said on Tuesday that no criminal charges will be brought against offenders, but Poland will require some remedy for untrue statements.

Brussels has also taken Poland's Law and Justice (PiS) government to task in recent years over controversial justice reforms, breaches of environmental law and its failure to take in refugees.

Speaking in Polish through an interpreter, Tusk told Warsaw to "stop the wave of bad opinions about Poland... This wave is taking on the proportion of a tsunami."

"The government has the wherewithal to stop both of these waves if it has the will," Tusk said, recalling all what ex-communist Poland has achieved since joining the European Union in 2004.

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