(Reuters) – Poland’s parliamentary speaker, Radoslaw Sikorski, has been quoted as saying that Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed to Poland’s then leader in 2008 that they divide Ukraine between themselves.
Sikorski, who until September served as Poland’s foreign minister, was quoted telling U.S. website Politico that Putin made the proposal during Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk’s visit to Moscow in 2008 – although he later said some of the interview had been “overinterpreted”.
“He wanted us to become participants in this partition of Ukraine … This was one of the first things that Putin said to my prime minister, Donald Tusk, when he visited Moscow,” he was quoted as saying in the interview dated Oct. 19.
“He (Putin) went on to say Ukraine is an artificial country and that Lwow is a Polish city and why don’t we just sort it out together,” Sikorski was quoted as saying.
Before World War Two, Poland’s territory included parts of today’s western Ukraine, including some major cities such as Lwow, known as Lviv in Ukraine.