The Warsaw Voice » Politics » News - November 6, 2013
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Kerry, Tusk contented with US-Poland bilateral relations
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Polish PM Donald Tusk
Security issues, including cooperation within NATO and the future of Poland in a American missile defense system as well as a US-EU trade agreement, and online privacy protection dominated talks between Polish officials and visiting US State Secretary John Kerry.

Kerry came to Poland Monday night on two-day official visit, the first meeting of Polish officials with US diplomatic representative since the 2010 visit by Hilary Clinton.

On Monday night Kerry headed to lay a wreath with the inscription "From the American people," on the grave of Poland's first post-communist prime minister, Tadeusz Mazowiecki, who died last week and was laid to rest on Sunday.

Kerry’s visit came against a background of the revelations that German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande were among leaders who reportedly had their phones tapped by the National Security Agency. Polish leaders have not been named among the surveillance targets, but PM Donald Tusk said he wanted to hear Washington's explanations on the matter.

On Tuesday morning the US diplomat met with Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski. “European concerns about alleged electronic eavesdropping by US intelligence should not be allowed to cloud trade talks starting soon between the United States and the European Union”, Kerry said at a press conference held jointly with his Polish counterpart Sikorski.

He also said US companies, with government support, would compete vigorously to win major defense contracts being put out to tender by Poland.

He added that the US military's plans for missile defense in Europe, in which Poland will play a part, were " absolutely on target."
We have already, on October 28, broken ground on the phase two, and we intend to provide for the next phase in 2018," Kerry said.

"That is our plan. Nothing has changed in that at this point in time. I don't foresee it changing at this point," Kerry said. "Obviously we will fulfill our obligations and work together with the government of Poland with respect to the deployment."

Minister Sikorski said that his meeting with the US Secretary of State confirmed good, strategic relations between the US and Poland as exemplified by political and military cooperation between the two countries.

Later on Tuesday Kerry met with PM Tusk. Both politicians reviewed to-date progress in talks on Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the US and the EU, they also voiced contentment with current bilateral relations, PM's chancellery reported. Good prospects for bilateral cooperation were seen in energy, R&D and innovation. Both sides also agreed to cooperate for greater privacy protection on the internet.

Later Kerry held a round table with Polish innovators some of whom are working directly with Silicon Valley companies. It was followed by a meeting with American and Polish businesses at a lunch organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Warsaw.

“Poland is an economic miracle and the best investment site in the world, US Secretary of State John Kerry told enterprisers at the meeting.

At the end of his Polish visit Kerry alongside Polish Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak went to the 32nd Tactical Airbase in central Lask to meet its Polish crew and a US unit stationed there.

Tuesday closed Kerry's visit in Poland. From Warsaw he will return to the Mideast and North Africa.