The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Poland’s foreign minister criticizes Pope’s statement on Ukraine war

Poland's Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has criticized Pope Francis' call for negotiations after more than two years of war in Ukraine. "How about encouraging Putin to have the courage to withdraw his army from Ukraine as compensation? Then peace would return immediately without the need for negotiations," Sikorski wrote on the X platform (formerly Twitter) on Sunday.

Poland is one of the most committed political and military supporters of Ukraine, which is under attack from Russia. The EU and NATO member has taken in almost one million refugees from its eastern neighbor.

In an interview with Swiss television published in advance at the weekend, the Pope said: "When you see that you are defeated, that things are not going well, you have to have the courage to negotiate." Without directly naming either of the two parties to the conflict, Russia or Ukraine, he added that without negotiations the situation could get even worse, which is why we should not be ashamed of it.

In the interview, Francis is also asked about demands from Ukraine for "the courage to surrender, the white flag", which others see as legitimizing the stronger side. The Pope responded in general terms: "It's a question of perspective. But I think that the stronger side is the one that recognizes the situation, that thinks of the people, that has the courage of the white flag to negotiate."

©Keystone/SDA

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