Visegrad Group, Benelux leaders meeting in Warsaw
PR dla Zagranicy
Leaders from four Central and Eastern European countries and the Benelux states were set to discuss the future of the European Union, Brexit and common defence policy in Warsaw on Monday.
Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydło. Photo: premier.gov.pl/P. Tracz.
The prime ministers of the Visegrad (V4) Group, comprising Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary, were to meet their counterparts from Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg after being invited by Polish PM Beata Szydło.
The meeting coincided with the start of divorce talks between Brussels and London.
In the afternoon, the prime ministers of the Visegrad countries were to make their way to the Royal Castle in Warsaw for a ceremony at which Poland was to officially hand over the presidency of the V4 group to Hungary.
Andrzej Sadecki, an expert from the Centre for Eastern Studies (OSW), a public research institution in Warsaw, said talks between Visegrad Group and Benelux leaders have taken place before but have been less frequent in recent years.
He said that the Benelux countries and the Visegrad Group differ on many EU issues.
He added: "Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg are in favour of deepening European integration and have nothing against a multi-speed European Union, which we are afraid of. There are also differences on migration issues."