Mariusz Błaszczak made the appeal at a security conference in Warsaw on Tuesday, Polish state news agency PAP reported.
The Polish defence minister told the Warsaw Security Forum: “February 24 has become a reminder to all of us that the nightmare of a full-scale war in Europe isn’t just a thing of the past.”
He added: “As a result of Russia’s brutal invasion in Ukraine, we face a security crisis we have hoped we would never face again – a full-scale armed conflict in Europe. Russia’s aggression has proven Moscow’s neo-imperial ambitions.”
Błaszczak, who is also a deputy prime minister, stressed the role of collective defence.
“No country can fully address the entire spectrum of threats and challenges alone, therefore the entire Euratlantic community must take a proactive stance to counter Russia’s efforts to undermine the rules-based international order,” he told the gathering.
Strengthening NATO’s eastern flank
Błaszczak quoted the words of the late Polish President Lech Kaczyński, who said in 2008, during the Russian invasion of Georgia: "Today Georgia, tomorrow Ukraine, the day after tomorrow the Baltic states, and then, perhaps, the time will come for my country, Poland."
Błaszczak told the Warsaw conference: “I appreciate the fact that our allies are increasingly admitting that these concerns were warranted."
He praised the decisions of NATO alliance’s Madrid summit in June, including "the move to enhance NATO battlegroups on the eastern flank to brigade level.”
He said these decisions “prove that NATO allies recognise the necessity of a long-term adjustment of the alliance and of increasing its presence on the eastern flank.”
‘We must maximise pressure on Russia’
Referring to Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, the Polish defence minister went on to state: “It is vital to stop this massacre now, for Ukraine to be able to drive the Russians out of the territories they have previously captured.”
Błaszczak added: “And so we must maximise comprehensive pressure on Russia, to limit its ability to take action and to end this conflict as soon as possible."
Tuesday is day 223 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Source: IAR, PAP, tvp.info