Germany offers to aid Polish air patrols after rocket strike

AFP - [email protected]
Germany offers to aid Polish air patrols after rocket strike
Police cars arrive in the Polish village of Przewodow, where an unexplained missile strike killed two people on Tuesday. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/AP | Evgeniy Maloletka

Germany said Wednesday it could send its own warplanes to support patrols over Poland following a deadly rocket strike in a village close to the border with Ukraine.


"As an immediate reaction to the incidents in Poland, we will offer to strengthen air policing with combat air patrols over its airspace with German Eurofighters," defence ministry spokesman Christian Thiels said at a regular press conference.

"This can happen from tomorrow, if Poland so wishes," Thiels said.

The sorties would be launched "from German airbases" without needing to relocate the jets to Poland, he said.

Such patrols take place in "specific airspaces", which are "agreed exactly with the Polish side", Thiels said.

German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht would seek to speak to her Polish counterpart on the matter today, he added.


Officials are racing to clarify the circumstances of the missile strike near the Polish village of Przewodow near the Ukrainian border, which occurred on Tuesday afternoon, killing two farm workers.

Ambassadors from members of the NATO military alliance went into emergency talks in Brussels after Poland put its military on high alert in the wake of the blast and summoned Russia's ambassador.

"Based on the preliminary information available, the strikes are most likely a result of Ukrainian anti-aircraft systems that were engaged to take Russian missiles out of the sky," Belgian Defence Minister Ludivine Dedonder said in a statement.

US President Joe Biden had said it was "unlikely" the missile came from Russia, and the Kremlin said it had "nothing to do with" it.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz earlier on Wednesday warned against any "hasty conclusions" about the incident.

Scholz stressed it was important to "make clear that this would not have happened without the Russian war against Ukraine".

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