By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
WARSAW/BUDAPEST/DENPASAR (Worthy News) – U.S. President Joe Biden said Tuesday that he spoke with his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda to express “deep condolences for the loss of life in Eastern Poland,” where two people were killed in an alleged Russian missile strike.
Biden stressed the U.S. “would offer our full support for Poland’s investigation of the explosion.” He commented on the social media platform Twitter that, “We will remain in close touch to determine appropriate next steps as it proceeds.”
Poland, a member of NATO, considered activating the military alliance’s Article 4 after the first reported missile strike inside NATO territory since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.
Under Article 4, NATO states can raise concerns about territorial integrity, political independence, or national security among member states before taking action.
Article 4 could then lead to activating Article 5, which says that an armed attack against a NATO ally is an attack on all. The Polish government had expressed concern that the war in neighboring Ukraine could spread to other countries.
U.S. officials said the blast in the Polish village of Przewodow was due to Russian missiles crossing into Poland on Tuesday (local time).
FIREFIGHTERS ON SCENE
“Firefighters are on the spot; it’s not clear what has happened,” said Lukasz Kucy, an officer on duty at a nearby firefighters post.
Media reports said the strike hit a grain-drying facility. Polish Radio ZET reported that two missiles hit the village, about 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) from the border with Ukraine, killing two people.
Russia’s defense ministry denied allegations that Russian missiles had hit Polish territory, describing them as a deliberate provocation.
“No strikes on targets near the Ukrainian-Polish state border were made by Russian means of destruction,” it said.
Poland has no concrete evidence showing who fired the missile, said the country’s president, while the government urged residents to remain calm.
The developments were closely monitored elsewhere in the region, but critics said Hungary’s perceived pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán had not offered condolences till late Tuesday.
Yet, Hungary’s President Katalin Novak tweeted that there are “still a lot of uncertainties in the missile attack of tonight” but that “Hungary stands shoulder to shoulder with Poland.”
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