A Russian projectile strikes Poland; fear of escalation between NATO and Moscow | War in Ukraine
The explosion in the village of Przewodow, near the Ukrainian border, fueled fears of a Russian attack beyond the limits of Ukrainian territory.
Two people died in an explosion in Przewodow, a village in eastern Poland near the border with Ukraine, authorities in the country said on Tuesday. Warsaw has confirmed that a “Russian-made projectile” has reached its territory. Moscow had previously denied launching an attack.
In a statement released overnight Tuesday-Wednesday, the Polish Foreign Ministry said the Russian ambassador had been summoned.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has expressed his condolences to his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda on the telephone on Tuesday.
I expressed condolences for the death of Polish citizens who fell victim to the terror of Russian missiles. We have exchanged available information and are in the process of clarifying all the facts. Ukraine, Poland, all of Europe and the world must be fully protected from terrorist Russia.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki had earlier in the day called an emergency meeting of its National Security and Defense Affairs Council.
The Polish President meanwhile spoke with his American counterpart Joe Biden, who also spoke with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
The head of Poland's National Security Office, Jacek Siewiera, and Polish government spokesman Piotr Muller answered questions from the press after the explosion at the Ukrainian border.
Also according to the Polish government, Warsaw is in the process of assessing whether it is necessary to invoke Article 4 of the NATO Charter, which involves bringing a question to the x27;attention of the North Atlantic Council […] and review with the Allies.
This provision is significantly different from Article 5, which states that if a NATO country is the victim of an armed attack, each member of the Alliance will regard this act of violence as an act of violence. armed attack directed against all members and will take the measures it deems necessary to come to the aid of the country attacked.
The ambassadors of the countries of the ;NATO will meet on Wednesday morning in Brussels at the request of Warsaw.
Mr. Stoltenberg said Tuesday night he felt it was important to get all the facts straight after speaking with President Duda about the explosion in Poland.
The event comes as Russia fired a barrage of missiles on several cities in Ukraine on Tuesday, including the capital, kyiv, and as far west as the country.
The explosion in the village of Przewodow near the Ukrainian border has fueled fears of a Russian attack that crossed Ukrainian territory.
Since nightfall news, Ukraine's backers and Poland's allies have been cautious, fearing an escalation that could push NATO forces into the conflict.
In the United States, the Pentagon claims to have opened an investigation, but specifies that it is unable to confirm whether this event is indeed attributable to Russian weapons.
We do not “We don't have any information to back up these claims at this time and we'll provide an update as soon as we hear back,” U.S. Defense Department spokesman Patrick Ryder said during an interview. from a press briefing on Tuesday afternoon.
On the side of the US National Security Council, spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said her service was working with the Polish government to obtain more information.
We cannot confirm specific information or details at this time. We will determine what happened and what the next steps should be, she added on Twitter.
To the US State Department, it is said to have incredibly worrying information from Poland, without however specifying the nature.
Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand also indicated that she was aware of the events, but stressed that it would be unwise to comment at this time.
I am in close contact with our Polish allies and we are monitoring the situation very closely, she added.
For its part, Moscow has denied these allegations outright. The Russian Ministry of Defense maintains that statements about possible missile strikes on Poland are a deliberate provocation intended to lead to an escalation of the conflict.
No strikes x27;was carried out on targets near the Ukrainian-Polish border by the Russian army, the ministry added.
Start of widget . Skip widget?End of the widget. Back to top of widget?
Poland is a member of NATO, a military alliance that also includes Germany, the United States, France, the United Kingdom and Canada, among others.
Several countries neighboring Poland reacted quickly to these allegations while it is still unclear whether the explosion was indeed attributable to Russian weapons.
On Twitter , the Latvian Defense Minister offered his condolences to [his] Polish brothers-in-arms before claiming that the Russian criminal regime fired missiles that not only targeted Ukrainian civilians, but also fell on Polish [and therefore] NATO territory.
More cautiously, the Estonian Foreign Minister considered the news from Poland to be particularly worrying and that his country was ready to defend every square centimeter of NATO territory.
Same story in Lithuania, another former Soviet republic bordering the Baltic Sea, where President Gitanas Nauseda has also called for solidarity with Poland.
In Hungary, Prime Minister Viktor Orban followed in the footsteps of his Polish counterpart and also convened his defense council.
In Germany, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock says he is following the situation very closely, in addition to being in contact with Warsaw.
And in France, President Emmanuel Macron has made it known that he is in contact with other allied countries, including Poland, in order to shed light on this matter.
With information Reuters, and Agence France-Presse