Polish President Andrzej Duda: ‘No Indication’ of an Intentional Attack on Poland

Polish President Andrzej Duda (1)
Peter Dejong/AP; Artur Widak/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

WARSAW — Polish President Andrzej Duda said Wednesday after a meeting with top national security officials there is no indication that Poland was intentionally attacked, after explosions near the Polish border with Ukraine triggered international alarm over the prospect of a Russian attack.

“There is no indication that this was an intentional attack on Poland. Most likely, it was a Russian-made S-300 rocket. We have not proof at the moment that it was a missile fired by the Russian side,” Duda said after the meeting.

Rather, he said, “There are many indications that it was an air defense missile, which unfortunately fell on Polish territory.”

Three U.S. officials said preliminary assessments were that the missile was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian missile — with the debris falling into Poland, according to the Associated Press. In addition, President Joe Biden said it was “unlikely” that Russia had fired missiles into Poland.

However, speculation had run rampant — including by some international officials — that Russia had fired missiles into Poland, a NATO member, after reports Tuesday that two people were killed by a projectile in the Polish village of Przewodów.

The Associated Press initially reported that a senior U.S. intelligence official said Russian missiles had “crossed into NATO member Poland.”

And shortly after the reports, Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky called the incident “a very signifiant escalation” and offered support for Poland.

The incident triggered concern that NATO could invoke Article 5 — a provision of the organization’s treaty that provides that if one NATO member is attacked, the others will consider it an attack against them all.

However, some open source intelligence experts called into question whether Russia fired missiles into Poland after photos of the damage showed what looked like debris of an S-300 air defense missile, which Ukraine uses against Russian missile attacks.

The incident came during a volley of Russian missiles across Ukraine that targeted energy infrastructure, including near the border with Poland.

Russia shortly after the incident denied firing missiles into Poland, and the Pentagon refrained from speculation at a press conference Tuesday afternoon.

“I’m not going to get into hypotheticals or speculate,” Air Force Gen. Patrick Ryder said. “We have no information right now to corroborate that there has been a missile strike.”

Still, Poland has increased the readiness of its military forces, as well as the presence of its forces in some eastern regions.

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