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NATO ambassador: Danger in Poland not high enough for Article 4

Jüri Luik.
Jüri Luik. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Estonia's NATO ambassador Jüri Luik (Isamaa) says that Poland is not likely to implement Article 4 of the NATO treaty over the current migration crisis on its border with Belarus, adding the danger level is not high enough to warrent that. Luik said, however, that the situation in Ukraine is concerning.

Belarusian activity on the Polish border has been described as a hybrid war by experts. But regardless of this, Poland alongside Latvia and Lithuania, won't call for for consultations on NATO's Article 4 to start, ETV news show "Aktuaalne kaamera" (AK) reported Wednesday evening.

"Currently, it can't be seen that Poland, Lithuania and Latvia who are the most affected by the crisis, are using Article 4. And even though these countries definitely feel threatened, it's not the level that would require calling together Article 4," Luik, a former defense minister, said.

In fact, this is in line with the situation on the Polish-Belarusian border, where there are signs of calming. It is currently unknown whether this is a direct result of a phone conversation between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko, since Merkel has met criticism in several Central and Eastern European countries for the call, her spokeswoman Steffen Seibert said Thursday.

"In order to alleviate the worrying humanitarian situation of thousands of people, it was logical to talk to those who have the opportunity to improve the situation in Minsk. Even if it included a ruler whose legitimacy is not recognized by Germany or other EU member states," Seibert said.

However, against the background of Poland, what is happening behind the Ukrainian border, where Russia has concentrated its forces, is still a headache for the West.

"We are constantly watching what is happening in Ukraine, what is happening around Ukraine and there is cause for great concern. All these concerns have been expressed unequivocally by both the Secretary-General of NATO and the US Secretary of State, the largest member of the alliance," Luik said.

For the time being, it is up to the Member States to act, he added.

"There have been British and American exercises here - American warships in the Black Sea. Great Britain, Turkey and the U.S. have either sold or donated a very high level of armaments to Ukraine," he continued.

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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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