Ukraine and Poland sign 10-year security agreement

Ukraine and Poland sign 10-year security agreement

President Zelensky and Prime Minister Tusk signed a 10-year security agreement, in which Poland pledged to provide Ukraine with additional military aid.

“In Warsaw, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk signed a security cooperation agreement,” the Ukrainian President’s office said on July 8.

Poland will provide Ukraine with additional military assistance and pledge to continue its support for the country during the 10-year term of the agreement. Warsaw will consider transferring an additional squadron of MiG-29s to Kiev, equivalent to at least 14 aircraft.

The agreement also provides for the establishment of a mechanism to shoot down missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in Ukrainian airspace in case they are headed towards Poland.

Since the beginning of the conflict, Russian missiles have twice flown from Ukraine into the airspace of Poland, a NATO member state, and then returned across the border.

President Zelensky (left) and Prime Minister Tusk at the signing ceremony of the security agreement in Warsaw on July 8. Photo: Office of the President of Ukraine

The agreement also provides for the creation of the Ukrainian Legion, a volunteer force trained in Poland. This unit is ready to accept Ukrainian citizens living in Poland and other countries.

The agreement also includes strengthening bilateral cooperation in the defense industry, including the establishment of production plants of Polish arms companies in Ukraine. In addition, the two countries will promote cooperation in non-military areas, such as intelligence, cyber security, information and maritime security, and protection of critical infrastructure.

Poland has been one of the strongest supporters of Ukraine in the conflict. Since the outbreak of hostilities, Warsaw has provided Kiev with 44 military aid packages, including various types of weapons and equipment worth a total of $4 billion.

Ruins at Okhmatdyt Children's Hospital in Kiev on July 8. Photo: AFP

Ruins at Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital in Kiev on July 8. Photo: AFP

This is the 21st bilateral security agreement that Ukraine has signed, with countries such as the US, UK, France and Germany. The agreement with Poland was announced shortly after Russia launched a large-scale missile attack on a series of Ukrainian cities, including Kiev.

Ukrainian officials said their air defenses shot down 30 of the 38 projectiles, but the attack killed at least 33 people and damaged 50 civilian buildings, including the capital Kiev’s largest children’s hospital, which was hit by a Kh-101 cruise missile, according to Ukraine’s security service.

Meanwhile, the Russian Defense Ministry said the raid hit “military and defense-industrial targets as planned,” adding that damage to civilian facilities was caused by Kiev’s anti-aircraft missiles.

At a joint press conference with Mr. Tusk, President Zelensky announced that he would retaliate against Russia’s raid, and called on partners to “react more strongly” to Moscow’s move.

He also asked the West to help Kiev strengthen its air defenses and protect its energy infrastructure. Prime Minister Tusk said Poland was discussing ways to supply energy to Ukraine before winter sets in.

Pham Giang (According to Reuters, AFP, Military)