Israel expected to raise shechita ban issue in talks with visiting Polish president

Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski to meet separately with Peres, Netanyahu on Monday.

President of Poland  Bronislaw Komorowski  370 (photo credit: REUTERS/Mike Segar )
President of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/Mike Segar )
Poland’s ban on kosher ritual slaughter is expected to come up when Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski meets separately with President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday.
Komorowski, in Israel on a two-day visit, has said he will take “significant steps to advance the issue of approval of kosher slaughter,” which has been outlawed in Poland since January.
In July, after the Polish parliament upheld the shechita ban, Israel’s foreign minister issued a rare statement calling the move “unacceptable,” saying the “decision seriously harms the process of restoring Jewish life in Poland. We are astonished that Poland, of all EU countries, should be the one where kosher slaughter will be forbidden.”
Komorowski’s visit follows fast on the heels of a trip Netanyahu took to Poland in June, with the rapidity of these visits indicating the strength of the ties between the two countries.
One official said that Israel has “a very good relationship” with Poland that is manifest in strong trade ties, numerous people-to-people and cultural programs, and increased security and diplomatic cooperation.
Another diplomatic official said that Poland is one of Israel’s strongest supporters inside the EU. It was one of 12 EU countries, all but three from former Iron Curtain nations, which abstained last year in the UN General Assembly’s vote on granting nonmember statehood status to the Palestinians. Only one EU country, the Czech Republic, voted against the move.
The Czech Republic is “in a league of its own” with regard to Israel, the official said, adding that Poland is in the next tier.
Komorowski, accompanied by his wife, Anna, will open up his trip with a visit to Yad Vashem.