The Latest: Poland slams comments by French leader Macron – Washington Post

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VARNA, Bulgaria — The Latest on French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to central and eastern Europe (all times local):

8:15 p.m.

Poland’s deputy foreign minister has summoned a French diplomat and expressed “indignation” over French President Emmanuel Macron’s criticism of Poland’s government.

During a visit to Bulgaria on Friday, Macron sharply criticized Warsaw over its opposition to hosting migrants and to his plans to reform EU rules under which companies can temporarily post employees in wealthier EU member states at cheaper wages. Macron said Poland was isolating itself from Europe and from its values of democracy and freedom.

The Foreign Ministry said the French charge d’affaires was summoned by Deputy Minister Marek Magierowski who expressed the government’s “indignation following the arrogant words” by Macron.

Magierowski stressed that, just like France, Poland is a full EU member and will protect its interests and citizens.

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7:40 p.m.

A senior official in the French president’s office is stressing that Emmanuel Macron was criticizing the Polish government and not targeting the country’s people as he assailed Warsaw’s failure to comply with major European principles.

The official, who was not allowed to speak publicly on the issue, noted that Macron said Friday he will continue to work with all EU member states, including Poland, and said the president had been answering a specific question about previous remarks by Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydlo on the issue of “posted workers” — cheap labor from eastern countries posted temporarily to more prosperous European nations.

Szydlo said on Thursday that her government would defend “Poland’s interests and Poland’s workers.” She and other Polish officials responded sharply to Macron’s comments in Bulgaria Friday.

— By Sylvie Corbet

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5:40 p.m.

Poland’s prime minister is dismissing as arrogant French President Emmanuel Macron’s criticism of her government over its position on the reform of European Union labor rules, and accusing France of trying to “take apart one of the pillars of the EU.”

During a visit to Bulgaria Friday, Macron sharply criticized Warsaw over its opposition to his plans to reform rules under which companies can temporarily post employees in wealthier EU member states at cheaper wages. Prime Minister Beata Szydlo told the wPolitice website Friday that Macron’s words were “arrogant,” advising him to be “more restrained” and “mind the business of his own country.”

She said that “the future of Europe will not be decided by the president of France, or by any other individual leader but jointly, by all the member states.”

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4:20 p.m.

Poland’s foreign minister has rejected criticism of the country by French President Emmanuel Macron, who said that “Poland has decided to isolate itself from Europe.”

Witold Waszczykowski pointed to the current visit to Poland by NATO’s secretary-general and Romanian and Turkish top diplomats as proof that the country wasn’t cut off.

Macron sharply criticized Poland’s government on Friday over its opposition to his plans to reform the rules for posting workers in the European Union, when companies temporarily post employees in wealthier EU member states at cheaper wages.

He said described it as an “illustration of the mistakes made by” Poland’s government.

Waszczykowski responded by saying the ongoing visits by NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and by Romanian and Turkish foreign ministers was proof that “Poland is not isolated.”

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