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Putin claims to have ‘killed 80 Polish fighters’ in horror warning to NATO country | United Kingdom | New UK News

RUSSIA has claimed it carried out a “precision strike” that wiped out 80 Polish fighters in the Donbass as tensions between Moscow and the NATO member country reach a fever pitch.

The reported losses come the same day Russian authorities claimed to have removed a Polish flag from a memorial site in Smolensk commemorating the thousands of Poles killed by the Soviet Union.

Andrei Borisov, the mayor of Smolensk confirmed the withdrawal saying: “There can’t be Polish flags on Russian monuments. Even less so after frankly anti-Russian comments from Polish political leaders”.

Tensions have risen between Russian officials and Polish President Andrzej Duda after he compared Vladimir Putin to Adolf Hitler.

Poland has also been one of the most proactive countries in supplying arms and humanitarian aid to Ukraine, as well as hosting the second largest number of Ukrainian refugees – second only to Russia.

In a statement from the Russian Defense Ministry, which could not be independently verified, it said: “Up to 80 Polish mercenaries, 20 armored fighting vehicles and eight Grad multiple rocket launchers were destroyed during precision strikes on the Megatex zinc plant in Konstantinovka’ in the Donetsk region”.

It comes after Moscow was furious recently over Lithuania’s blocking of EU-sanctioned goods from reaching the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, located between the Baltic state and Poland.

The 223 km² territory is Russia’s territory outside its mainland and is its gateway to the Baltic Sea.

Lithuania has now blocked rail transit from Russia and Belarus to Kaliningrad.

Sanctioned products banned from export to Russian territory by the EU include construction machinery, machine tools and other industrial equipment.

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Regional Governor Anton Alikhanov said the ban would cover around 50% of items imported by Kaliningrad.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the move was unprecedented and Russia considers it illegal.

Nikolai Patrushev, Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation and a close ally of Putin, said: “Russia will certainly respond to such hostile actions. Measures are being developed in an interdepartmental format and will be taken soon. Their consequences will have a serious negative impact on the Lithuanian population.

This prompted Poland to ask NATO to further strengthen its security presence in the Suwalki Gap, which connects the three Baltic states to other NATO allies.

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who is the head of government as opposed to the president who is the head of state, recently spoke at a press conference in Brussels.

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During the talks, he said, “We will seek to strengthen this corridor…in our discussions with our NATO partners.”

Kaliningrad and the Suwalki Gap could be used as ground zero for any military conflict between NATO and Russia.

Experts fear Putin will move immediately to cut off the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia from the rest of NATO and protect the isolated enclave from the inevitable NATO strikes.

Now, Russian claims that 80 Polish mercenaries have been killed should only add to the already difficult situation.

Poland has fully approved of the Lithuanian blockade of Russian materials to its Baltic enclave and it has since been reported that Russian Railways has temporarily suspended the transit of some goods from Belarus to Poland.

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This notice was published: 2022-06-25 14:01:42

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