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Russian envoy ignores Polish summons over missile incident: spokesman

25.03.2024 16:00
Russia’s ambassador to Warsaw has ignored a summons from the Polish foreign ministry and failed to provide explanations about an incident in which a Russian cruise missile briefly flew into Poland's airspace, a spokesman said on Monday.
Polish foreign ministry spokesman Paweł Wroński.
Polish foreign ministry spokesman Paweł Wroński.Photo: PAP/Szymon Pulcyn

"The Russian ambassador to Poland, Sergey Andreev, did not attend the foreign ministry in Warsaw despite being summoned to do so on Monday," Polish foreign ministry spokesman Paweł Wroński told reporters.

He added that a diplomatic note requesting clarification on the violation of Polish airspace would be sent to the Russian foreign ministry "by another means."

'The object entered Polish airspace'

Poland's armed forces said on Sunday that a Russian cruise missile launched at Ukraine's western Lviv region violated Poland's airspace in the early morning.

The Operational Command of Poland's Armed Forces said in a statement that "on March 24 at 4:23 a.m. Polish airspace was violated by one of the cruise missiles launched by Russian long-range aviation at night. The targets of the strikes were towns in western Ukraine."

The Polish military added in an X post that "the object entered Polish airspace" near the village of Oserdów, in the country's eastern Lubelskie province near the Ukrainian border, "and stayed there for 39 seconds."

The statement also said that "during the entire flight," the Russian missile "was observed by military radar systems."

Poland's army spokesman Jacek Goryszewski told reporters that the missile travelled about 2 km into Polish airspace before returning to Ukraine, the Reuters news agency reported.

Poland demands explanations

Poland's authorities said they would demand an explanation from Moscow.

"Poland will demand explanations from the Russian Federation regarding another violation of our country’s national airspace," the Polish foreign ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

"Above all, we call on the Russian Federation to stop terrorist airstrikes on the inhabitants and territory of Ukraine, put an end to the war, and address its own domestic problems," it added.

"We express our sympathy for the victims of Russian bombings and their relatives," the statement also said. "The Republic of Poland condemns all forms of terrorism and attempts to revise borders by force."

The Polish foreign ministry intends to summon the Russian ambassador over the airspace violation, Deputy Foreign Minister Andrzej Szejna said on Sunday.

Russian missile attacks near Poland pose threat to NATO: Ukrainian envoy

The Ukrainian ambassador to Poland, Vasyl Zvarych, has said that Russian missile attacks on Ukraine's western Lviv region near the Polish border pose a "serious threat" to NATO countries.

"The Russian missile attack on the Lviv region and the violation of Polish airspace by a Russian missile are a serious threat to NATO countries, including Poland," Zvarych wrote on X on Sunday.

He added: "We must stop Russian forces and drive them out of Ukrainian territory. I appeal to the countries of the free world to accelerate the process of arming Ukraine."

Polish Defence Minister Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz said that Warsaw would continue to support Ukraine against Russia's ongoing invasion, public broadcaster Polish Radio’s IAR news agency reported.

Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022, starting the largest armed conflict in Europe since World War II.

Monday is day 761 of Russias war on Ukraine.


Source: IAR, PAP, Reuters, gov.pl