Polish Agriculture Minister Czeslaw Siekierski issued an apology after a group of Polish farmers had spilled Ukrainian grain on the border between the two countries.
The minister described the situation as "tense" and deemed the farmers' actions as "the wrong form of protest, but one often used by farmers in different countries."
"The farmers did not hold back their emotions, but it is worth remembering that they are in a very difficult economic situation,” a Feb. 12 message on the ministry’s website quotes Siekierski.
“At the spring approaches, they have no money to buy fertilizers and start planting. It's hard not to understand their desperation. I am a supporter of dialogue and direct conversations as the best form of solving difficult problems."
Warsaw is engaged in technical negotiations with Ukraine’s Agriculture Ministry to establish trade terms that would limit the flow of goods "that disrupt the stability of agricultural markets," the minister said.
Regarding the Ukrainian government officials' reaction to the spilled grain, the minister characterized it as "harsh and emotional," but expressed understanding for the dissatisfaction with export difficulties.
"Polish farmers have helped Ukraine and want to continue helping," Siekierski adds.
"However, they would like the Ukrainian budget and small farmers to benefit from this aid—not oligarchs who have huge swaths of land to grow grain and other types of agricultural products. They are mainly behind this large import [of Ukrainian grain], which destabilizes European food markets."
Polish protesters near the Dorohusk checkpoint on the border with Ukraine damaged Ukrainian trucks and threw grain out of them on Feb. 11. According to the reports, there were three tons of grain spilled from each damaged truck.
On Feb. 12, Polish police launched an investigation of the incident.
Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine