CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — One of the highest-ranking representatives in Poland visited the Queen City Tuesday afternoon.

The Polish Ambassador to the United States, Marek Magierowski, spoke to a crowd at Queens University in Charlotte. His speech in front of students and faculty centered around the Russian occupation of Ukraine.

On Feb. 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops to infiltrate the Ukrainian border. The move turned out to be costly and deadly for both countries, with far-reaching effects for the rest of the world.

Magierowski broke down a lengthy list of the conflict’s social, economic, and geopolitical implications.

Almost a year after the invasion, millions of Ukrainian refugees (primarily women and children) now live with Polish families. He says Poland welcomes them and calls them guests, not refugees.

Magierowski mentioned the cost of military aid to Ukraine. He says he hopes this will end sooner rather than later. The U.S. has dished out nearly $30 billion since the start of the war.

“The true cost has been the suffering of Ukrainian people, we should not forget about that; of course, we all keep our fingers crossed for this war to end as quickly as possible on the other hand, we understand it won’t be possible in the foreseeable future,” Magierowski said. “I do believe Ukraine will win this war, and it will end with Ukraine’s victory. That’s why for example, we have to keep up the pressure.”

On a much lighter note, when asked how he liked the Carolinas, the ambassador said he enjoys the blue skies. The ambassador will give a keynote speech at UNC Chapel Hill on Wednesday.