Poland–Ukraine relations

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Polish-Ukrainian relations
Map indicating locations of Poland and Ukraine

Poland

Ukraine

Polish-Ukrainian relations were established soon after Ukraine gained independence from the Soviet Union in the early 1990s. They have been improving since, with Poland and Ukraine forming a strong strategic partnership.[1] Various controversies from their shared history occasionally resurface in Polish-Ukrainian relations, but they are not having a major influence on the bilateral relations of Poland and Ukraine.[2]

They are the second and third largest Slavic countries, after Russia. The two countries share a border of about 529 km.[3] Poland's acceptance of the Schengen Agreement created problems with the Ukrainian border traffic. On July 1, 2009, an agreement on local border traffic between the two countries came into effect, which enables Ukrainian citizens living in border regions to cross the Polish frontier according to a liberalized procedure.[4]

Ukraine is the country with the largest number of Polish consulates.[5]

History of relations[edit]

Polish-Ukrainian relations can be traced to the 16th-17th centuries in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the often turbulent relations between that state and the mostly polonized nobility (szlachta) and the Cossacks. And even further into the 13-14th centuries when the Kingdom of Poland and the Ruthenian Kingdom carried close ties.

The next stage would be the relations in the years 1918–1920, in the aftermath of World War I, which saw both the Polish-Ukrainian War and the Polish-Ukrainian alliance. The interwar period would eventually see independent Poland while the Ukrainians had no state of their own, being divided between Poland and the Soviet Union. This led to a deterioration of Polish-Ukrainian relations, and would result in a flare-up of ethnic tensions during and immediately after World War II (massacres of Poles in Volhynia and Operation Vistula being the most infamous).

While this left the Polish-Ukrainian relations in the mid-20th century in a relatively poor state, there was little meaningful and independent diplomacy and contact between the People's Republic of Poland and the Ukrainian SSR. The situation changed significantly with the fall of communism, when both Poland and Ukraine became fully independent and could once again decide on foreign policies of their own.

Modern era[edit]

Victor Yushchenko (R), President of Ukraine, kisses Aleksander Kwaśniewski, President of Poland, Davos 2005

On October 13, 1990 Poland and Ukraine agreed to the "Declaration on the foundations and general directions in the development of Polish-Ukrainian relations". Article 3 of this declaration said that neither country has any territorial claims against the other, and will not bring any in the future. Both countries promised to respect the rights of national minorities on their territories and to improve the situation of minorities in their countries. This declaration re-affirmed the historic and ethnic ties between Poland and Ukraine, containing a reference to "the ethnic and cultural kinship of the Polish and Ukrainian peoples".[6]

Support for Ukrainian sovereignty has become an important component of Polish foreign policy.[1] Poland strongly supported the peaceful and democratic resolution of the 2004 Orange Revolution in Ukraine, and has backed NATO-Ukraine cooperation (such as the Lithuanian–Polish–Ukrainian Brigade), as well as Ukraine's efforts to join the European Union.[1][7]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Zajączkowski, 2005.
  2. ^ Copsey, 2006.
  3. ^ (Polish) Informacje o Polsce - informacje ogólne. Page gives Polish PWN Encyklopedia as reference.
  4. ^ Local Border Traffic Agreement With Poland Takes Effect, Ukrainian News Agency (July 1, 2009)
  5. ^ Poland to open consulate general in Sevastopol in 2010, Kyiv Post (May 17, 2010)
  6. ^ Stephen R. Burant. International Relations in a Regional Context: Poland and Its Eastern Neighbours. Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine. Europe-Asia Studies, Vol. 45, No. 3. (1993), pp. 395-418.
  7. ^ Polskie Radio. Poland supports Ukraine retrieved 18.03.2008

Further reading[edit]

  • R. and K. Wolczuk, Poland and Ukraine: a strategic partnership in a changing Europe? Royal Institute of International Affairs, 2003.
  • Iffly, Catherine, Du conflit à la coopération? Les rapprochements franco-allemand, germano-polonais et polono-ukrainien en perspective comparée (The French-German, German-Polish and Polish-Ukrainian Rapprochements in Comparative Perspective), Revue d'Allemagne, 35/4, 2003.
  • Zajączkowski, Wojciech, Polish-Ukrainian Relations, Yearbook of Polish Foreign Policy (01/2005), [1]
  • Siwiec, Marek, The Polish-Ukrainian Relations during the Last Decade, The Polish Foreign Affairs Digest (4 (5)/2002), [2]
  • Joanna Konieczna, Poles and Ukrainians, Poland and Ukraine: The Paradoxes of Neighbourly Relations
  • Kevin Hannan, review of Polska-Ukraina: 1000 lat sąsiedztwa, The Sarmatian Review, September 2004
  • Copsey, N. (2006) Echoes of the Past in Contemporary Politics: the case of Polish-Ukrainian Reconciliation, SEI Working Paper, No. 87.
  • Oleksandr Pavliuk, The Ukrainian-Polish Strategic Partnership and Central European Geopolitics
  • Дрозд Р., Гальчак Б. Історія українців у Польщі в 1921–1989 роках / Роман Дрозд, Богдан Гальчак, Ірина Мусієнко; пер. з пол. І. Мусієнко. 3-тє вид., випр., допов. – Харків : Золоті сторінки, 2013. – 272 с.
  • Roman Drozd, Roman Skeczkowski, Mykoła Zymomrya: Ukraina — Polska. Kultura, wartości, zmagania duchowe. Koszalin: 1999.
  • Roman Drozd, Bohdan Halczak: Dzieje Ukraińców w Polsce w latach 1921–1989». Warszawa: 2010