Poland’s pro-EU government to remove 50 ambassadors appointed by the previous administration

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Poland is recalling 50 of its ambassadors as part of efforts by the new, pro-European Union government to improve diplomatic missions at a challenging time, the Foreign Ministry said Wednesday. The diplomats had all been appointed by the previous, right-wing administration.

A ministry statement did not name any of the ambassadors being recalled by Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski. The previous, Euro-skeptic government had ruled for eight years, until December. The ministry said the decision had been approved by Prime Minister Donald Tusk and that the procedure has begun.

The statement did not say when the recalled ambassadors would be replaced or if any foreign postings would be cut.

However, the recall of the diplomats may not get the approval of President Andrzej Duda, who has been linked to the previous government and is critical of Tusk. If Duda does not approve, in locations where ambassadors were told to return home, charges d’affaires would remain as heads of missions.

The statement said the change of the envoys was “necessary” and would serve a “better, professional implementation of the difficult tasks” facing Poland’s foreign policy.

Tusk said this it was crucial to have a team of loyal envoys at a challenging time, when neighboring Ukraine is fending off Russia’s full-scale war. He stressed it was “not a retaliation” against his predecessors.

Tusk has also said that he had high opinion of the work of Poland’s ambassador to Washington, Marek Magierowski, which suggested the envoy might not be recalled.

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