A Russian-made rocket hits the Ukrainian-Polish border area, killing two people. Moscow denies any responsibility. Where did the bullet come from?
After the rocket hit in eastern Poland with two dead, there are indications that the projectile is an anti-aircraft missile from Ukraine. According to information from the German Press Agency, US President Joe Biden announced this at a meeting with other heads of state and government from NATO and G7 countries in Bali. He is said to have spoken of a missile from the S-300 system.
Biden had called for a crisis meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Bali because of the rocket hit in Poland. The heads of state and government of the seven major western democracies (G7) as well as other NATO and EU countries took part.
“We offer Poland our full support and assistance in the ongoing investigation.” , it said in a statement afterwards. “We condemn the barbaric rocket attacks carried out by Russia on Ukrainian cities and civilian infrastructure on Tuesday.”
French President Emmanuel Macron and Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz and the heads of government from Great Britain, Italy, Canada and Japan sat at the table. Biden had previously spoken to Polish President Andrzej Duda on the phone.
The Russian government denied having fired on targets in the Ukrainian-Polish border area and spoke of a targeted provocation.
Poland’s President Andrzej Duda: Currently no evidence who fired the rocket
According to Polish sources, a “Russian-made rocket” had landed in the eastern Polish village of Przewodow, six kilometers from the border to the Ukraine war zone. According to the fire department, two people were killed on a farm.
The Interfax Ukraina news agency in Kyiv reported, citing military experts, that the missiles could have been Russian Ch-101 cruise missiles. The first photos of debris at the point of impact pointed to the missiles of the S-300 air defense system for other experts. This system of Soviet design is an essential part of the Ukrainian anti-aircraft defense.
Duda went on to say, “We currently have no clear evidence as to who fired the rocket. Investigations are ongoing.” Poland placed part of its armed forces on a higher level of readiness.
Is Article 4 of the NATO Treaty coming into force now?
A spokesman for the Polish government said that a decision had been made with the NATO allies to examine whether there were grounds for initiating the Article 4 procedures of the NATO treaty.
Article 4 provides for consultations between the NATO states if a country sees the integrity of its territory, its political independence or its own security threatened.
The Ministry of Defense in Moscow spoke of a targeted provocation. No targets in the Ukrainian-Polish border area were fired upon. The photos of alleged debris that are circulating in the Polish media also have nothing to do with Russian weapon systems.
According to the Kiev count, Russia fired at Ukraine on Tuesday with more than 90 rockets and cruise missiles.
Biden said of the Russian attacks: “The moment the world came together at the G20 to call for de-escalation, Russia decided to escalate further in Ukraine.”
Scholz also phoned Duda. “Germany stands close to our NATO partner Poland,” wrote government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit on Twitter. Scholz expressed his condolences.
Ukraine pushes for no-fly zone
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said about the missile strike in Poland: “This is a Russian missile attack on collective security!” He added: “This is a very significant escalation. We must act.”
After the missile hit Polish territory, Kyiv is pushing for the establishment of a no-fly zone. “We ask for the sky to be closed because the sky has no borders,” Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov wrote on Twitter.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba also called for a tough and “principled” response to the missile strike. Kuleba said on Twitter that he made that clear during a phone call to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Accordingly, he condemned “Russia’s rocket terror”.
According to President Selenskyj, the targeted Russian attacks on the energy supply temporarily meant that ten million people lost their electricity. The supply could later be restored for eight million people. Wednesday is the 266th day of Ukraine’s defense against the Russian invasion.
The G20 meeting ends on Wednesday. A declaration will also be adopted condemning Russia’s war against Ukraine. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who represented Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin, left the meeting on Tuesday.