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Polish discusses veto on talks between EU and Russia

Polish President Lech Kaczynski held a meeting with Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski to discuss the veto of the start of EU-Russia talks on a new agreement, Polish PAP news agency reported on Wednesday.

The conversation, which lasted nearly 60 minutes, mainly centered on the veto, Polish PAP news agency quoted Secretary of State of the Presidential Chancellery Maciej Lopinski as saying, who nevertheless refused to elaborate any further. Poland will lift its veto on talks between the European Union (EU) and Russia on the condition that Moscow lift a ban on Polish meat and plant imports. Meanwhile, the mandate for talks should include energy issues in a way that is satisfying for Poland, Kaczynski told reporters before his meeting with the president. "We made a decision that can be taken as a manifestation of Poland's goodwill towards Russia, as we have made it possible for EU ministers to discuss the mandate," Kaczynski added.

Earlier the same day, the European Commission (EC) expressed its satisfaction with a constructive approach by Polish authorities to the lifting of the veto for the start of EU-Russia talks. The EC received a „green light” from Poland to start negotiations, said EC spokesman Johannes Laitenberger, adding that true progress would depend on Russia as well. Poland vetoed the launch of talks between the EU and Russia on a broad economic cooperation agreement last November due to the Russian embargo. Russia imposed the embargo on Polish meat and other agricultural products in November 2005, citing fraudulent veterinary certificates issued by Poland to justify the ban. (