Telephoning Poland

The Prime Minister’s Director of Communications Sandra Buckler passed along the following this afternoon:

The Prime Minister spoke yesterday to Prime Minister Tusk of Poland to express Canada’s appreciation for the contribution Poland is making to the international effort in Afghanistan. With 1300 troops on the ground, as well as helicopters, Poland is a robust contributor as a new and committed member of NATO. The Prime Minister reviewed with Prime Minister Tusk the establishment of the Manley Panel and its recommendations, broadly accepted by the government, including that Canada remain in Kandahar beyond 2009, on condition that NATO allies contribute an additional battle group and that additional equipment is secured for the Canadian Forces. Prime Minister Tusk confirmed Poland’s desire to make as significant a contribution as their capacity will allow and to assist Canada wherever possible. The Prime Minister indicated he was looking forward to working with President Kaczynski, who will represent Poland at the NATO Summit in Bucharest, and other allies, to ensure the greatest possible chances of success for the international effort in Afghanistan.

The Prime Minister and Prime Minister Tusk also spoke about the commitment flowing from the last Canada-EU Summit in Berlin, to undertake a comprehensive study into a closer economic partnership between Canada and the EU. The study is due to be completed in the spring which will allow the preparation of concrete deliverables for the forthcoming Canada-EU Summit under the French Presidency in the fall of 2009, an initiative which Poland supports.

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