NATO announced on Wednesday that the missile that hit Poland on Tuesday night was “most probably” a stray fired from Ukraine rather than from Russia as originally thought.
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said at a press conference that the blast that killed two people at the Polish village of Przewodów near the border with Ukraine was most likely caused by Ukrainian air defense, but investigations are ongoing.
Stoltenberg added that the Alliance does not consider this Ukraine’s fault, as it has the right to defend itself against a barrage of Russian missile attacks. Instead, he said Russia bears the “ultimate responsibility” for the attack in Poland, because of its invasion of Ukraine.
Earlier, President Biden said it is unlikely the missile that hit NATO member Poland was fired from Russia.
“There is preliminary information that contests [the theory] that the missile was fired from Russia,” Biden said. “It is too early to say that the missile was fired from Russia. But, it is unlikely in the lines of the trajectory that the missile was fired from Russia.”
The US President also said the allies would support Poland’s investigation, which would “collectively determine our next step as we investigate and proceed,” adding there was “total unanimity” among the leaders of the G7 and NATO allies on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia.
According to an Associated Press report, three U.S. officials said preliminary assessments suggested the missile was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian missile amid a crushing salvo against Ukraine’s electrical infrastructure on Tuesday. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.
Ukraine still maintains stocks of former Soviet and Russian-made weaponry, including the S-300 air-defense missile system.
France has also called for the “utmost caution” in assessing the origin of the blast in eastern Poland, AFP reports. Many countries in the region possess the type of weapon used, so identifying it does not necessarily confirm who fired it, the French presidency said in a statement.
Both Ukraine and Russia use the type of missile that hit Poland
Both Russian and Ukrainian forces have used Russian-made munitions during the conflict, with Ukraine deploying Russian-made missiles as part of their air defense system.
📹 A video from the Polish village Przewodow reportedly struck by Russia
Video: Tsaplienko TG pic.twitter.com/jLu9AwipNU
— KyivPost (@KyivPost) November 15, 2022
Poland’s Foreign Ministry said late Tuesday that a “Russian-made missile” landed on the Polish village of Przewodów near the border with Ukraine, killing two people. The ministry did not specify the type of missile or where it was fired from, but the country’s President said it was “most likely produced in Russia.”
In a statement late on Tuesday, Russia’s Defense Ministry said reports of the explosion were “a deliberate provocation in order to escalate the situation.”
“There were no strikes made on targets near the Ukrainian-Polish state border,” the Russian Defense Ministry said, adding that photos of wreckage published by Polish media “from the scene in the village of Przewodow have nothing to do with Russian weapons.”
The missile hits Poland as Russia bombards Ukraine
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said Tuesday’s missile attacks by Russia on Ukraine were Moscow’s message that it has no interest in ending the war.
In his nightly address, Zelensky said a total of ninety missiles were launched, damaging energy infrastructure as well as businesses and residential buildings.
“And when did it happen? As soon as the first day of the G20 summit ended in Indonesia,” he said, later referring to the event as “G19,” a pointed snub at Moscow.
“Russia is told about peace, but it fires missiles in response,” Zelensky said. “It is told about the global crises that Russia caused, and it launches Iranian drones in response. It is offered ten points to end the war, and it fires ten missiles per each point about peace.”
Zelensky said the attacks had led to blackouts across the country, including in Kyiv, Lviv, Kharkiv, and Zhytomyr regions.