Top Polish politicians have hit out at the European Parliament after an invitation was extended to a disgraced oligarch’s mistress after she was expelled from Poland.
Ludmila Kozłowska was deported from Poland after security services raised questions about her links to Mukhtar Ablyazov, a Kazak fugitive wanted in five countries for embezzlement, contempt of court and murder. She is also alleged to have links to Russian arms dealers and the controversial billionaire George Soros.
Upon arrival in Brussels in August, she was informed she was banned from entering the Schengen zone and subsequently deported back to her native Ukraine.
A diplomatic row broke out shortly after Germany flouted the rules and granted her a special visa so she could speak at the Bundestag.
A spokesman for the President’s office said the invite “does not help the cause of good relations and confidence between our countries.
Jarosław Zieliński, Poland’s deputy Interior Minister, told the media: “This is not the first time we have such a situation when our neighbor is not in solidarity with us.
“It is a pity, we would expect solidarity from the Germans with Poland and other countries, because if someone threatens the interest of a given country in the same EU zone, the Schengen area, then this should be honored by all countries.
“This is provocative behavior, it seems to me that this should be avoided at all costs in the future. We must, as Poland, take all diplomatic steps so that such situations do not happen, moreover, they have been taken”
Her case seems to be causing yet more division between Poland and her European neighbours after news broke that Belgian MEP Guy Verhofstadt had invited her to Brussels to speak about her experiences in Poland.
Polish MEP Ryszard Czarnecki said Verhofstadt was using Kozłowska as a means of ‘attacking Poland’.
“When one European Union country pranks another by inviting someone who is considered persona non grata, is not building European solidarity. On the contrary.”
He described Verhofstadt as ” an anti-Polish politician and when he has the opportunity to attack Poland, he takes it.”
PiS MEP Tomasz Poręba added that an official from Warsaw’s Foreign Ministry would be raising the issue with Belgium’s ambassador.
According to a report in Polish media, Belgian authorities have completely disregarded the wealth of information the security services placed in the SiS System about Kozłowska.
They also say that she has bene granted a visa for a much longer period than she was given in Germany, saying that MEPs have booked her in for engagements over the next few weeks.