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Polish government confirms Ukrainian air defense missile fell on Polish soil last year

by Martin Fornusek September 28, 2023 6:22 PM 2 min read
Police look for pieces of the missile near the explosion site in Przewodow, Poland, on Nov. 17, 2022. (Photo credit: Karolina Jonderko/For the Washington Post)
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The projectile that caused the death of two people in Poland's Przewodow last November was a stray Ukrainian anti-air missile, Polish Justice Minister Zbigniew Ziobro confirmed, the Polish Radio Lublin reported on Sept. 28.

According to the minister, an investigation by Poland's Prosecutor's Office "categorically" established that Ukraine launched the missile that hit a Polish grain facility near the Ukrainian border on Nov. 15, 2022.

"It was a Soviet-made missile, but it belonged to the Ukrainian military," Ziobro said.

The newspaper Rzeczpospolita reported on the findings of the Prosecutor's Office two days ahead of the official announcement.

According to the news outlet, the investigators concluded that the Ukrainian air defense launched two S-300 missiles with a range of 75-90 kilometers in an effort to intercept a massive missile strike that Russia launched on that date.

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While one of the air defense missiles hit its target, the other allegedly flew by accident into Poland's territory. For an unknown reason, the missile's built-in self-destruct mechanism did not activate, thus causing the deadly accident, the experts said.

Ziobro complained that the Ukrainian side was not cooperative throughout the investigation of the incident. He reminded that Polish prosecutors assist Ukraine with investigating Russian war crimes.

Kyiv denied that the incident was caused by a Ukrainian missile but confirmed that its forces attempted to intercept a Russian projectile near and during the timeframe of the missile strike in Poland.

Polish opposition leader calls for unwavering military aid to Ukraine
“The Polish state should not budge from its position, military support of Ukraine should not be questioned,” said Donald Tusk, Poland’s former prime minister.

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