Polish and Baltic presidents seek solution to Ukrainian grain issue

  • 2023-09-21

A meeting between the presidents of the Baltic States and Poland organised by Estonia as part of the opening week of the UN General Assembly has focussed on seeking a solution to the issue of the transporting of Ukrainian grain and on the NATO summit being held in Washington in 2024.

President Alar Karis discussed with his fellow heads of state – President Edgars Rinkēvičs of Latvia, President Gitanas Nausėda of Lithuania and President Andrzej Duda of Poland – opportunities for the exporting of Ukrainian grain from EU ports. “It is vital not only to Ukraine but also to those countries in need of the grain that we find alternative transportation channels,” he remarked. “There is untapped potential for exports from Baltic ports, and using them requires close cooperation with Poland.”

President Karis also spoke with his counterparts about matters pertaining to the forthcoming NATO summit in Washington. These included the importance, in setting objectives, of reinforcing the alliance’s defence and deterrence posture, with groundwork needing to be done to guarantee preparedness for any military threat posed by Russia. “We must take concrete action to ensure progress is made on all of the key decisions taken at the summit in Vilnius,” the Estonian head of state said. “That includes the promise that Ukraine’s future lies in NATO.”

The Baltic and Polish presidents also talked about the Three Seas Initiative and made plans regarding the summit on the initiative being held in the Lithuanian capital in 2024.

While in New York, President Karis also met with UN General Assembly president Dennis Francis to discuss the growing role of the assembly and the possibility of reforming the Security Council. Speaking with his Moldovan counterpart Maia Sandu, he remarked on the progress Moldova has made in regard to European Union integration, while his discussions with H.S.H. Hereditary Prince Alois of Liechtenstein focussed on cooperation within the UN pertaining to impunity and on shared objectives in the Council of Europe.