Honorable Minister of Information and Broadcasting
Excellence and fellow diplomats,
Ladies and gentlemen
Thank you very much for joining us in celebrating of 105th anniversary of Poland’s Independence.
It is a joyous occasion that also prompts us to reflect on the value of our freedom.
As history demonstrates, freedom and independence are not given once and forever.
They are rather processes which need to be constantly renewed, reaffirmed and reinvigorated. And they always come with a price. As the polish nation has learned, sometimes it is a piece of human life and outmost sacrifices.
This is of course a universal story. Nothing in the world -we live in-suggests that this is about to change.
Tragically, we have been witnessing gruesome scenes of death and violence in the world today, including in the Middle East.
Our hearts and minds go out to all those who have been killed, injured, kidnapped or lost their home. We mourn with the families who have been painfully affected by such experience.
In spite of- what today feels to be extremely hard to imagine- we continue to hope that both Palestinians and the Israelis will be able to live in peace and freedom in their respective states and thus enjoy the inalienable rights of all human beings. We stress that civilians lives must be protected in the line with International law and international humanitarian law.
Those of you who attended similar events at the Polish Embassy in past two years will not be surprised by the importance we attach to the war in our neighbor’s house. all these reasons which motivated us to strongly stand with Ukraine from the outset of this brutal aggression are still there. They are equally valid today as they were yesterday and they will be in weeks and months to come.
The Ukrainian fight is about asserting freedom and dignity. It is about upholding the rules of the international law such as sovereignty and territorial integrity. Let us not forget that Ukraine did NOT attack Russia, did NOT target civilians and did NOT provoke the aggression.
Let it be in no doubt that our resolve is to continue our support and solidarity with the Ukrainian people. We welcome the acknowledgement that Ukraine’s future is within the European Union and we wholeheartedly support achieving this historic goal.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Throughout this year, we have celebrated 60th anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic relations between Poland and Pakistan. We are just about to start seventh decade of our cooperation.
As we take stock of our achievements, we can point to an upward trajectory of the trade between our countries, which is approaching nine hundred million dollars and has a lot to do with the Pakistani exporters taking advantage of the European Union’s generous GSP plus program.
A brighter spot on the economic side of our relations is investment made by Orlen/PGNIG-Polish Oil and Gas Company- in exploration of tied gas deposits in Pakistan. The multi-hundred million projects have a big potential to grow.
The polish government fully supports the company’s engagement in bringing indigenous Pakistani gas to the Pakistani consumers.
Together with another Polish company – Exallo Drilling, PGNiG/Orlen are sponsors of our celebration today. I would like to express my sincere gratitude for their support.
The anniversary encourages us to think about the future. While continuing along the existing lines, we would like to look for new fields of cooperation.
For instance, we see opportunities in exploring collaboration in the water sector: water purification and water management technologies. Such projects can address some of the challenges of the adverse effects of the climate change.
We will continue engagement with Pakistani non-governmental organizations in projects related to education and women empowerment.
We are eager to continue political and strategic dialog with our Pakistani partners. this year successful high level political consultations have given us a lot of encouragement in this regard.
Last but not the least, we are promoting Polish-Pakistani joint historical heritage.
We are excited about the initiative of naming one of the prominent streets in Islamabad area after the name of Air commodore Władysław Turowicz – a leader of the polish pilots who came to Pakistan to help creating Pakistani air forces. It has our full support.
Promoting the achievements of the polish mountaineers – explorers of the Pakistan’s beautiful mountains- is yet another idea we want to pursue.
In this regard, I would like to encourage you to watch a documentary about one of them- Jerzy Kukuczka – which will be screened at the Blakwhole community center, this coming Thursday. A legendary Pakistani mountaineer Mr. Nazir Sabir will grace that event together with the film director Pawel Wysoczanski.
Our wonderful jazz musicians will be performing at the Islamabad Jazz Festival this coming Sunday at PNCA. I strongly encourage you to attend it.
These events together with today’s reception constitute what can be called a Polish Heritage Week in Islamabad.
Thank you for being a part of it.
Bohot Shukriya! Pak-Poland dosti Zindabad!