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WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), and Jim Risch (R-Idaho), founders of the bipartisan U.S. Senate Caucus on Poland, welcomed Polish Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna to Washington for a meeting to promote and strengthen the United States’ relationship with Poland. During the meeting, the senators and Foreign Minister Schetyna discussed key issues in bilateral relations, including the Senators’ support for Poland’s inclusion in the Visa-Waiver Program, Poland’s role in the fight against ISIL, and the need for a strong transatlantic response in the face of threats to security and democracy in Eastern Europe.

"Connecticut’s strong and vibrant Polish American community has made incredible contributions to our state as small business owners and active community members,” said U.S. Senator Chris Murphy. “My goal for this caucus is to be their voice in the U.S. Senate and cement the overall relationship between the United States and Poland. I’m so pleased that my colleagues and I had the opportunity to sit down with Foreign Minister Schetyna today, and I look forward to continuing our work together on issues important to Polish Americans in Connecticut and across the country.”

“As Co-Chair of the Senate Poland Caucus, I’m pleased to welcome Foreign Minister Schetyna to the United States Capitol and look forward to working together to affirm and strengthen the endearing and enduring relationship between the United States and Poland,” U.S. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski said. “The United States and Poland are good friends and steadfast and true allies, from our economic and military alliance to our shared values. The Polish people resisted the yoke of communist oppression for decades after World War II, and their heroic and peaceful resistance hastened the end of the Soviet Union and the emergence of one Europe, whole and free. My Polish heritage has given me an identity and a set of beliefs that make me the Senator I am with a belief in freedom, a belief in people, and a belief that we must always speak truth to power. I will continue to lead the fight in the U.S. Senate to strengthen the strong bond between America and Poland, bound together by shared values and working for a future of strong economic and security cooperation.”

“Poland has emerged as another anchor of political and economic stability in Europe,” said U.S. Senator Jim Risch. “Poland’s strong commitment to our shared Trans-Atlantic values and their willingness to fight alongside the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan are highlights of their friendship to the U.S.  Today, Poland and its neighbors face an assertive Russia and they need our reassurance.  This meeting was a good opportunity to hear their concerns firsthand and discuss ways the U.S. can help to ensure stability and prosperity in Eastern Europe.”

Murphy, Mikulski, and Risch launched the U.S. Senate Caucus on Poland in the 113th Congress.