US President Joe Biden may travel to Europe and visit Poland next month to mark the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, news outlets reported on Thursday.
The trip has yet to be confirmed, but reports by CNN and other outlets cite at least one official as saying that the visit may include Poland, a key NATO ally currently hosting thousands of US troops and serving as a hub for Western arms transfers to Ukraine.
According to NBC News, the proposed trip would serve to highlight Ukraine’s resilience in the face of Russia’s brutal onslaught and “affirm America’s solidarity with Ukraine as the conflict enters a new phase.”
While the possibility exists for a US Presidential visit to Poland, it is highly unlikely that Biden would travel to Ukraine as part of this trip, officials were quoted as saying, due to security concerns.
Source: Radio Gdańsk, Radio Poland
In a final vote yesterday evening, the Sejm approved Poland’s budget for 2023, which expects the economy to grow 1.7 percent, with inflation targeted at 9.8 percent.
In Thursday’s final vote, an absolute majority of Polish MPs backed the financial plan, overriding all 77 modifications introduced earlier by the Senate, state news agency PAP reported.
The approved budget ensures full financing for the government’s key social assistance projects, say officials, including its flagship “500-plus” child benefit program, along with subsidized school supplies for children nationwide.
Health spending is also expected to exceed 6 percent of GDP next year, while defense spending is expected to remain at 3 percent of GDP this year.
Under the approved financial plan, Poland’s budget deficit is expected to be no more than PLN 68 billion (EUR 14.4 billion, USD 15.7 billion) this year, with a general government deficit targeted at 4.5 percent of GDP.
Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki reportedly described the government’s financial plan as “an ambitious budget for difficult times.”
The budget bill now goes to President Andrzej Duda for his signature.
Source: Radio Poland, PAP
Commemorations are being held in southern Poland today to mark the 78th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp built by Nazi Germany during World War II.
January 27 is officially recognized as International Holocaust Remembrance Day, with ceremonies being held around the world to commemorate the murder of six million Jews, along with hundreds of thousands of other national and social minorities, by Nazi Germany between 1933 and 1945.
Unlike previous years, “a Russian delegation was not invited this year to take part in marking the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz,” according to officials from the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum located at the site.
Piotr Cywiński, director of the museum, told the Polish Press Agency it was obvious, given “the current context,” why his organization could not invite Russian representatives. The museum instead “welcomed ten female conservator-restorers from Ukraine who had fled bombardments,” he reported.
“Russia will need an extremely long time and very deep self-examination after this conflict in order to return to gatherings of the civilized world,” Cywiński added.
Today’s commemoration ceremonies will be streamed live on the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum website and social media platforms: https://t.co/aTQBHyzLlr.
Source: Radio Poland
Radio Gdańsk listeners will be treated to a live broadcast of the Polish-Ukrainian band “Taraka” tonight to celebrate the launch of a nationwide charity campaign in support of Ukraine.
In collaboration with Radio Rzeszów, tonight’s concert will inaugurate the nationwide charity campaign of Caritas Polska and Audytorium 17, a group of regional broadcasting stations under the umbrella of Polskie Radio. The campaign will collect material goods to support Ukrainian communities and raise funds to purchase an ambulance for the city of Bakhmut.
“Taraka” was founded in 2012 by bandleader and principal songwriter Karol Kus. The mixed Polish-Ukrainian group has recorded three LPs and is currently on tour as part of a concert series, “Serce za Serce” or “Heart for Heart,” which is a thank you to Poles for helping Ukrainian families.
In March, the group plans to embark on a new tour, „Niepodległa Niepodlegej,” which will cover 11 European capitals as well as Chicago, Toronto, Los Angeles, and Tashkent.
Tonight’s concert will begin shortly after 19:00 and will be broadcast on-air and streamed live on the Youtube channel of Radio Gdańsk.
Source: Radio Gdańsk
Today will be a mix of sun and clouds, with an increasing chance for rain or snow as the day progresses and a strong breeze coming from the northeast. Temperatures will remain close to freezing, starting off around 2°C, or 36°F before dropping to -3°C or 27°F overnight. Similar weather is expected for tomorrow, with a chance for additional rain or snow early next week.