Ukrainian missile strikes Poland amid continued Russian attacks

The ongoing conflict in Ukraine is worsening an already struggling eastern European region


Photo courtesy of (Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Members of the Polish Police search the fields near the village of Przewodow in Poland on November 16

Emmanuel Cruzat, News Writer

A Ukrainian air defense missile struck the small village of Przewodow, Poland on November 15, killing two. 

The missile was intended to intercept a Russian ballistic missile, however a faulty guidance system is believed to have caused the Ukrainian missile to crash into Polish territory. 

The strike was initially believed to be a Russian attack on Poland. World leaders expressed concern of a possible spillover of the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian War into Poland and other neighboring countries. 

“We are all a part of the NATO family… We stand with Poland” said Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo on the day of the attack. Estonian Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Reinsalu tweeted that Estonia was prepared to defend “every inch of NATO territory” in response to the attack.

A Russian attack could have triggered the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) collective defense agreement, which would bring its 30 member states, including the United States, directly into the ongoing conflict. Investigations by NATO and the Polish government concluded that the missile was actually Ukranian in origin.

“The [strike] was likely caused by a Ukrainian air defense missile fired to defend Ukrainian territory against Russian cruise missile attacks,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stolenberg said in a press conference. “But let me be clear: this is not Ukraine’s fault. Russia bears ultimate responsibility as it continues its illegal war against Ukraine.”

The strike comes amidst a continued barrage of Russian missile strikes at Ukrainian civilian infrastructure, aimed at destroying Ukrainian power facilities ahead of the coming winter. Much of eastern Europe — including neighboring Poland — are suffering through freezing winters as a result of fewer working power grids as well as sanctions on Russian-produced coal and gas, leaving many to look for alternative ways to stay warm this winter.