Ambassador's statement on Ukraine war only a warning says gov't spokesman

2023-03-21 13:12 update: 2023-03-22, 15:18
Piotr Mueller. Photo PAP/Tomasz Gzell
Piotr Mueller. Photo PAP/Tomasz Gzell
Claims by the Polish ambassador to France that Poland could "enter the conflict" in Ukraine is just a warning about what may happen if Ukraine loses the war, the Polish government's spokesman has said.

On Saturday, Jan Emeryk Rosciszewski, the Polish ambassador in Paris, gave an interview to the French LCI television station. 

The broadcaster quoted Rosciszewski's statement on its Twitter account as saying: "If Ukraine fails to defend its independence, we will have no choice but to enter the conflict." 
The Polish embassy in Paris later on Sunday released a statement saying that Rosciszewski's remarks were taken "out of context."

On Sunday, the Polish ambassador in Kiev, Bartosz Cichocki, commented on Rosciszewski's statement in a tweet saying "after all, it is obvious that the fall of Ukraine means war in Poland."

Piotr Mueller, the Polish government spokesman, sought to clarify the remarks by the two diplomats, saying that "it is not about Poland's participation in a regular war, but a warning that if Ukraine loses the war, the next countries that may be attacked are the Baltic states or Poland."

Mueller told state-owned broadcaster TVP 1 that the ambassadors' statements were made in the context of the warning of Russia's aggressive policy made by the late Polish President Lech Kaczynski in Georgia in 2008, when he said: "Today Georgia, tomorrow Ukraine, the Baltic States the day after tomorrow, and then perhaps the time will come for my country, Poland!" 

In a statement released on Sunday, the Polish embassy in Paris wrote that Rosciszewski's comment "is interpreted by some media in isolation from the context in which it was made."

The statement further claimed that, in the interview, Rosciszewski "argued for the need for allies to support Ukraine. He also spoke about the threat that Russia poses to Europe and European values." 

"A careful listening to the entire conversation makes it clear that there was no announcement of direct involvement by Poland in the conflict, but only a warning of the consequences that a defeat of Ukraine could have," the embassy wrote.

"Looking for sensational content that does not fit in with Poland's consistent efforts over the past year to help Ukraine win this conflict so that it would not spill over into Europe and Poland should be regarded as ill will," it added.(PAP)