The White House on Wednesday blamed Russia for the missile blast in Poland this week, saying that regardless of what the investigation into the incident finds, Russia is ultimately responsible for it.
National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said that while the White House has not seen anything that could contradict the assessment that the explosion was a result of an Ukrainian air defense missile, Russia caused Ukraine to have to defend itself.
“We will continue to assess and share any new information transparently as it becomes available. We will also continue to stay in close touch with the Ukrainians regarding any information they have to fill out the picture,” she said.
“That said, whatever the final conclusions may be, it is clear that the party ultimately responsible for this tragic incident is Russia, which launched a barrage of missiles on Ukraine specifically intended to target civilian infrastructure. Ukraine had — and has — every right to defend itself,” she added.
Poland and NATO have said that the missile strike wasn’t a Russian attack and President Biden has also said that it’s unlikely that the missile that hit Poland was fired from Russia.
The developments come after a missile struck a grain silo in a village in Poland about 15 miles from the Ukraine border on Tuesday. The strike killed two people and spurred fears that it could signal an escalation of Russia’s war in Ukraine.
The White House commended the Polish government’s investigation into the explosion, according to Watson.
“We will not get ahead of their work and remain in close touch with our Polish counterparts, as we are still gathering information,” she said.
Watson reiterated in her statement that the U.S. stands in solidarity with Ukraine and sends thoughts and prayers to the families of the two Polish citizens killed. Additionally, Biden called Polish President Andrzej Duda on Tuesday to offer condolences for the loss of life.
Source: The Hill