Polish Foreign Service Day is celebrated on the anniversary of Marshal Józef Piłsudski’s letter that he sent to foreign governments informing them that Poland had regained independence and was back on the map of Europe and the world.
“Piłsudski informed other statesmen that Poland will be reestablishing itself within the international structures and that Polish diplomats will be returning to their foreign postings they once occupied. We accept this date, the date as a start date for Poland's modern foreign service and this is when it officially resumed,” President Duda said.
Mr Duda spoke about the history and meaning of the Foreign Service. The President also awarded those who had made a significant impact on the development of Polish foreign policies and diplomacy.
Foreign Affairs Minister Jacek Czaputowicz presented the goals that lay ahead of Polish diplomacy over upcoming years. It is based on three pillars: strengthening the Polish position in the EU, facing Brexit and supporting EU enlargement policies, to develop Polish cooperation in NATO as the most important element of our security and to promote and monitor the Warsaw Process, a newly established international policy tool for maintaining peace and stability in the Middle East.
Despite being in existence for just 101 years, Polish diplomacy has much to be proud of. One example of the extraordinary missions of Polish diplomats was the one conducted by Aleksander Ładoś, the Polish Ambassador to Switzerland during World War II.
He headed a group of Polish diplomats and Jewish activists in Switzerland who saved Jews from the Holocaust by issuing them with fake passports of several South American countries.
“Today we know that the Bernese Group issued passports and other false documents for more than five thousand people. But of course it wasn't possible to save all of them. In light of the latest research we know that Polish diplomats saved more than four hundred people,” said Sebastian Ładoś, descendant of Aleksander Ładoś.
The celebrations were accompanied by an exhibition dedicated to the remarkable story of the Bernese Group also known as the Ładoś Group.