Missile that killed two in Poland ‘probably not fired from Russia,’ says Biden

15 November 2022, 19:03 | Updated: 16 November 2022, 15:46

The missiles struck Poland
The missiles struck Poland. Picture: Social media/Getty
Fran Way

By Fran Way

US President Joe Biden has said it is "unlikely" a missile that killed two people in Poland was fired from Russia.

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Initial findings suggest the missile that hit Poland was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian missile, according to US officials.

Three US officials said preliminary assessments suggested the missile was fired by Ukrainian forces at an incoming Russian one - amid the crushing salvo against Ukraine's electrical infrastructure on Tuesday.

Mr Biden's comments after he convened an "emergency" meeting of the G7 and Nato leaders in Indonesia early on Wednesday morning for consultations on the attack that killed two people in the eastern part of Poland near the Ukraine border.

Biden says it is 'unlikely' a missile strike in Poland was fired from Russia

Security forces take measures in Przewodow village on Ukrainian border
Security forces take measures in Przewodow village on Ukrainian border. Picture: Getty
G7 leaders gather to hold an "emergency" meeting to discuss a missile strike on Polish territory
G7 leaders gather to hold an "emergency" meeting to discuss a missile strike on Polish territory. Picture: Getty

"There is preliminary information that contests that," Mr Biden told reporters when asked if the missile had been fired from Russia.

"It is unlikely in the lines of the trajectory that it was fired from Russia, but we'll see."

The president, who was awakened overnight by staff with the news of the missile explosion while in Indonesia for the Group of 20 summit, earlier called Polish President Andrzej Duda to express his "deep condolences" for the loss of life.

Read more: Russian missiles hit Kyiv hours after Zelensky unveils peace plan at G20

Read more: 'Get out of Ukraine now and end this barbaric war:' Rishi Sunak confronts Russian foreign minister Lavrov at G20

Mr Biden promised on Twitter "full U.S support for and assistance with Poland's investigation", and "reaffirmed the United States' ironclad commitment to NATO".

He said that he briefed the allies on his conversations with Mr Duda and Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg and that there was "total unanimity among the folks at the table" to support Poland's investigation into the attack.

"I'm going to make sure we figure out exactly what happened," Mr Biden said. "Then we're going to figure out our next step."

Meeting at a large round table in a ballroom in his hotel, Mr Biden hosted the leaders of the G7, which includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the European Union, along with the president of the European Council and the prime ministers of Nato allies Spain and the Netherlands.

A statement from the Polish Foreign Ministry identified the missile as being made in Russia. But Poland's president was more cautious about its origin, saying that officials did not know for sure who fired it or where it was made.

He said it was "most probably" Russian-made, but that is being still verified. If confirmed, it would be the first time since the invasion of Ukraine that a Russian weapon came down on a Nato country.

The foundation of the Nato alliance is the principle that an attack against one member is an attack on them all.

The strikes by Russia were the largest attack on Ukraine's energy infrastructure since the start of its full-scale war.

According to Oleksandr Vilkul, the head of the Kryvyi Rih military administration, 566 miners are trapped underground due to energy cut-offs caused by Russian strikes on Ukraine's energy infrastructure in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast.

Volodmyr Zelensky addressed world leaders at the Summit in Bali via Videolink this afternoon and said he was ready to end the war but that Russia had to withdraw all troops from his territory first.

President Vladimir Putin was long expected to attend the summit in Bali, but is sending his foreign minister Sergei Lavrvov in his place, as he continues to suffer military setbacks and unanimous condemnation from Western powers.

Rishi Sunak also confronted Lavrov telling him to 'get out of Ukraine and end this barbaric war'.In the first face-to-face meeting between a British Prime Minister and a senior Russian leader since the war began he said the UK would support Ukraine 'for as long as it takes'.

He explained: "Countries should not invade their neighbours, they should not attack [civilians] and they should not threaten nuclear escalation."