#World News

War a real threat and Europe unready, says Poland's Tusk

By Paul Kirby

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk has delivered a blunt warning that Europe has entered a “pre-war era” and if Ukraine is defeated by Russia, nobody in Europe will be able to feel safe.

“I don’t want to scare anyone, but war is no longer a concept from the past,” he told European media. “It’s real and it started over two years ago.”

His remarks came as a fresh barrage of Russian missiles targeted Ukraine.

Poland said Nato aircraft were scrambled to protect its airspace.

Russia has intensified its bombardment of Ukraine in recent weeks. Ukraine’s air force said it had shot down 58 drones and 26 missiles and Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said energy infrastructure had been damaged in six regions, in the west, centre and east of the country.

Mr Tusk, a former president of the European Council, said Russian President Vladimir Putin had already blamed Ukraine for the jihadist attack on Moscow’s Crocus City Hall without any evidence and “evidently feels the need to justify increasingly violent attacks on civil targets in Ukraine”.

He pointed out that Russia had attacked Kyiv with hypersonic missiles in daylight for the first time earlier this week.

He used his first foreign interview since returning to office as Polish prime minister at the end of last year to deliver a direct appeal to Europe’s leaders to do more to bolster its defences.

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