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Grain from Ukraine: How Polish Farmers Play into the Hands of Putin

The recent surge of protests organised by Polish farmers along the Ukrainian border has plunged the region into turmoil, prompting questions about the underlying motives driving these actions and their potential implications for regional stability.

by EUToday Correspondents
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Grain from Ukraine
Grain from Ukraine: As tensions escalate, it becomes increasingly apparent that these demonstrations may not solely be a response to agricultural grievances but could also be manipulated to serve broader political agendas, potentially aligning with the interests of Russia.

Commencing on the 9th of February, the protests have caused significant disruptions at various border crossings between Poland and Ukraine.

Notably, checkpoints such as “Medyka – Shehyni,” “Grebenne – Rava-Ruska,” and “Dorohusk – Yahodyn” have been blockaded by Polish farmers, resulting in prolonged delays and traffic congestion.

The involvement of the Confederation party, a marginal political faction known for its anti-European Union stance and pro-Russian sentiments, adds complexity to the situation.

Led by figures like Rafał Mekler, who has a history of collaboration with Russian interests, the Confederation party’s agenda appears to align closely with Russia’s objectives in the region.

The protests have been marked by deliberate acts of disruption, including the spoiling of Ukrainian grain on the Polish border.

On the 11th of February, near the “Yahodyn-Dorohusk” checkpoint, protesters poured grain from three Ukrainian trucks onto the road, obstructing traffic and causing chaos.

This incident, captured on video and widely circulated on social media, underscored the disruptive nature of the protests and their potential to escalate tensions.

In response to these provocations, Ukrainian officials have called for a robust and decisive reaction from the Polish authorities.

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba sharply condemned the incident, stating, “The spoiling of Ukrainian grain on the Polish border is unacceptable. Any farmer should know how much hard work it takes to produce grain, especially during wartime. For the sake of friendly Ukrainian-Polish relations, the perpetrators of this provocation must be held to account.”

Moreover, Ukrainians are particularly sensitive to the incident of spoiling grain due to historical memories of the Holodomor, organised and carried out by the Soviet leadership in 1932-33 as a genocidal act against Ukrainians.

The Holodomor resulted in the deaths of an estimated 4.5 million Ukrainians, making the act of spoiling Ukrainian grain especially poignant for many Ukrainians.

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