Poland notes flexing of Russian military muscle

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Poland’s Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak blasted the “unprecedented” level of Russian naval and air force activity in the Baltic Sea region this week, saying it “does not serve to build good relationships and trust,” reported the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) Thursday.

Speaking to Poland’s news channel TVN24, Siemoniak noted that the skirtings of airspace and maritime border zones of the Baltic Sea countries by Russian military craft have not yet crossed the line between international neutral zones and the jurisdiction of national territories.

But he warned that responding to Russia’s seeming provocations with a matching show of force would only escalate tensions in international relations around the Baltic.

The minister declined to speculate on the reasons for Moscow’s sabre-rattling: “One can interpret it differently. We know the Russians themselves say their activities are a reaction to NATO moves,” he said.

Siemoniak is currently in Latvia meeting with his counterparts from all three Baltic states.

As reported, more than thirty different military aircraft from Russia were intercepted by NATO Baltic Air Police (BAP) jets Tuesday, prompting expressions of concern by western leaders that the unannounced flights pose a threat to civilian airliners.

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