Poland says Russian missile that crashed near Bydgoszcz in December was no threat

22 May, 02:56 PM
A forest near Bydgoszcz, where the remains of a rocket were found, on April 27, 2023 (Photo:REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)

A forest near Bydgoszcz, where the remains of a rocket were found, on April 27, 2023 (Photo:REUTERS/Kacper Pempel)

A Russian Kh-55 missile, fragments of which were found in December 2022 near Bydgoszcz, wasn't directed at Poland, Deputy Defence Minister, Marcin Ociepa, said PolsatNews on May 22.

The missile's arrival in Poland was not obvious, he said. "Something appeared on the radar," but it wasn't clear to the very end, if the object would enter the Poland airspace.

"We should have been moderate in our assessments. We are not talking here about a missile aimed at Poland... It is about a missile that was supposed to confuse the Ukrainian anti-missile defense system but, due to malfunction, changed its flight trajectory and self-destructed," Ociepa said.

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The incident isn't just white and blue as someone would like it to see, he believes. However, Warsaw should be stricter in complying with established procedures and treat such cases "more carefully." He also said that there are no conflicts between the Polish Ministry of Defense and the military command, and Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak won't be dismissed from his post in the near future.

The Polish Air Force's Technical Institute said on May 10 that the wreckage of a Russian X-55 missile found near Bydgoszcz in northern Poland could have flown 300-500 kilometers across the country.

Błaszczak confirmed that it had indeed been fragments of a Russian missile which fell near the town of Bydgoszcz on Dec. 16, 2022. On that day Russia conducted another mass air attack on Ukraine, launching 74 missiles.

Commenting on the findings, Polish President Andrzej Duda said the missile "did not pose any serious threat to the security of the Republic of Poland.”

The Polish military said the missile was not armed with an explosive warhead – the warhead was a concrete dummy of the same weight as a real warhead, installed so as to ensure the weapon had the correct weight parameters for flight.

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