Biden: 'Unlikely' Missile That Hit Poland Was Fired From Russia

He spoke to NATO, G7 leaders in Indonesia
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 15, 2022 7:55 PM CST
Updated Nov 15, 2022 10:08 PM CST
Biden Calls Emergency Meeting After Missile Hits Poland
In this photo provided by the White House, President Biden talks on the phone with Polish President Andrzej Duda as White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, center, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken listen, Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022, in Nusa Dua, Indonesia.   (Adam Schultz/The White House via AP)
UPDATE Nov 15, 2022 10:08 PM CST

President Biden said Wednesday it was “unlikely” that a missile that killed two in NATO-ally Poland was fired from Russia, but he pledged support for Poland's investigation into what it had called a “Russian-made” missile, the AP reports. Biden spoke after he convened an “emergency” meeting of the Group of Seven and NATO leaders in Indonesia Wednesday morning for consultations on the attack that killed two people in the eastern part of Poland near the Ukraine border. “There is preliminary information that contests that," 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.” It was not immediately clear whether Biden was suggesting that the missile hadn't been fired by Russia at all. Ukraine still maintains stocks of former Soviet and Russian-made weaponry, including the S-300 air-defense missile system.

Nov 15, 2022 7:55 PM CST

President Biden convened an emergency meeting of Group of Seven and NATO leaders in Indonesia Wednesday morning for consultations after NATO ally Poland said a "Russian-made" missile killed two people in the eastern part of its country near the Ukraine border. Biden, who was awakened overnight by staff with the news of the missile explosion while in Indonesia for the Group of 20 summit, called Polish President Andrzej Duda early Wednesday to express his "deep condolences" for the loss of life, the AP reports. In a tweet, Biden promised "full US support for and assistance with Poland’s investigation," and "reaffirmed the United States’ ironclad commitment to NATO." Biden has also spoken to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, the BBC reports.

Meeting at a large round table in a ballroom in his hotel, the president hosted the leaders of the G7, which includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, along with the president of the European Council and the prime ministers of NATO allies Spain and the Netherlands. Biden replied "no" to reporters who asked if he would provide an update on the situation in Poland. A statement from the Polish Foreign Ministry identified the missile as being made in Russia. But Poland's president, Duda, 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. "We are acting with calm," Duda said. "This is a difficult situation."

story continues below

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 AP notes. Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau summoned the Russian ambassador and "demanded immediate detailed explanations," the government said. The strike came to light Tuesday as Russia pounded Ukraine’s energy facilities with its biggest barrage of missiles yet, striking targets across the country and causing widespread blackouts. In his nightly address, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the strike in Poland offered proof that "terror is not limited by our state borders."

(More Russia-Ukraine war stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.