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Polish troops won’t be sent to Ukraine for now: official

24.01.2022 20:00
Poland is yet to make a decision on military assistance to Ukraine, but will not be sending troops to its eastern neighbour for now, a national security official said on Monday, amid a standoff between Russia and the West over Kyiv's NATO ambitions.
Polish President Andrzej Duda (second left) at Mondays talks with senior Cabinet officials in Warsaw.
Polish President Andrzej Duda (second left) at Monday's talks with senior Cabinet officials in Warsaw.KPRP/Eliza Radzikowska-Białobrzewska

Paweł Soloch, who heads President Andrzej Duda's National Security Bureau (BBN), made the statement after the Polish head of state met with senior Cabinet ministers to discuss the situation surrounding Ukraine, news agencies reported. 

“At the moment, there is no talk of our forces being deployed to Ukraine,” Soloch told reporters.

“The Ukrainians have not asked for that at this point, and this is also the stance of the whole [NATO] alliance,” he said.

Duda on Monday spoke with Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak and Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński, as well as military and security service officials, his office said in a statement.

The meeting focused on ways to support Ukraine in the face of possible aggression from Russia and on cooperation between allies, the state PAP news agency reported.

Soloch, who was among the aides who accompanied Duda during Monday’s discussion, told reporters it also touched on decisions taken at last week’s security talks in southern Poland between Duda and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Poland's President Andrzej Duda (right) and Ukraine's Volodymyr Zelensky (left) meet for security talks in Wisła, southern Poland. Poland's President Andrzej Duda (right) and Ukraine's Volodymyr Zelensky (left) meet for security talks in Wisła, southern Poland. Photo: Marek Borawski/KPRP

Support for Ukraine

Asked if the issue of military support for Ukraine was discussed on Monday, Soloch replied in the affirmative, but would not be drawn on any details, the PAP news agency reported. 

“The bulk of the time was devoted to cooperation and coordination of activities with our allies,” he said, adding that a series of "significant talks" would be held "in the immediate future, including at the highest level.”

Later on Monday, European leaders including Poland's Duda were scheduled to hold talks with US President Joe Biden, according to the White House.

Soloch also told reporters that when it came to non-military aid, Poland was ready to offer Kyiv humanitarian assistance if necessary, as well as "help in coordinating energy policy on the international arena." 

“At this stage, above all, political efforts are also highly important, such as creating a unified message, also among the Western countries, a message that would have a deterrence effect on Russia,” Soloch said.

Paweł Soloch:  będziemy wspierać strategicznych partnerów Paweł Soloch. Photo: Radek Pietruszka/PAP

NATO said on Monday it was putting forces on standby and sending additional ships and fighter jets to eastern Europe in a move aiming to reinforce deterrence and defence as Russia continues its military build-up in and around Ukraine.


Source: IAR, PAP