“As far as we know, Putin is threatening to use tactical nuclear weapons on Ukrainian territory, not attacking NATO. That means NATO should respond in a conventional way, but the response should be devastating. And I think that this is the signal that the NATO alliance is now sending to Russia”, said Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau in an interview with US broadcaster NBC News.
The comments by the head of Polish diplomacy followed Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, again threatened the West with the use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine, saying: “Imagine that Russia is forced to use the most powerful weapons against the Ukrainian regime, which has committed an act of large-scale aggression, dangerous for the very existence of our state. I believe that NATO will not intervene directly in the conflict, even in this situation”.
Minister Zbigniew Rau stressed that Vladimir Putin is not only losing the war in Ukraine but is also losing the support of the Russian people. He pointed out that this was caused, among other things, by the mobilisation and sending of “poorly trained and equipped soldiers” to the front, which would not change the course of the war, but would have an impact on the internal situation in Russia.
Earlier, the head of Polish diplomacy was a guest of the Washington-based Centre for Strategic and International Studies, where the discussion also focused on Ukraine.
Rau declared that Poland would do everything in its power to support Ukraine’s rapid accession to the European Union. “But to be realistic, it will take a long time. I don’t know how long. Hopefully not as long as it took for Poland, about ten years, and not as long as it takes for the Western Balkan countries, sometimes more than 20 years”, he added.
He also recalled that Poland has so far supplied Ukraine with more heavy military equipment than France, Germany and Italy combined, and is also doing a lot to help Ukraine economically.