Kamala Harris says US, Poland ‘united’ after jets controversy

United States Vice President, Kamala Harris, has stressed that the United States and Poland are “united” on policy towards Ukraine during the Russian invasion after Washington rejected an offer by Warsaw to transfer its MiG-29 through an American airbase in Germany.

Harris told reporters at a joint news conference with Polish President, Andrzej Duda, in Warsaw on Thursday that US military and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine is an “ongoing process”.

 “I want to be very clear: the United States and Poland are united in what we have done and are prepared to do to help Ukraine and the people of Ukraine, full stop,” she said.

Earlier this week, officials in Washington rejected the public Polish proposal to help deliver the Russian-made MiGs to Ukraine, saying that the move risked escalation with Moscow.

“Polish generosity is clearly on display for the whole world to see,” Pentagon spokesperson, John Kirby, said on Wednesday. “But at this time, we believe that provision of additional fighter aircraft provides little increased capabilities at high risk.”

In Warsaw, Harris reiterated the US commitment to defend “every inch of NATO territory” under the alliance’s collective defence treaty. Poland joined NATO in 1991, but Ukraine is not a member of the US-led bloc.

“The United States takes seriously that an attack against one is an attack against all,” Harris said.

The vice president’s visit to Poland comes as the Russian invasion of neighbouring Ukraine enters its third week.

Talks between Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, and his Ukrainian counterpart, Dmytro Kuleba, in Turkey on Thursday failed to secure a ceasefire.

Russia launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine on February 24 after a months-long standoff that saw Moscow amass troops near the Ukrainian borders as it demanded an end to NATO expansion into former Soviet republics.

The US and its allies were quick to impose sweeping sanctions on the Russian economy, as well as financial penalties on Russian President, Vladimir Putin, and elites in his inner circle.

SOURCE: AL JAZEERA

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