Fact Check: NATO Did NOT Issue Threat Of Attack On Russia Over Missile Proximity To Ukraine Border, Putting Romanians In Danger

Fact Check

  • de: Jurnaliștii Lead Stories
Fact Check: NATO Did NOT Issue Threat Of Attack On Russia Over Missile Proximity To Ukraine Border, Putting Romanians In Danger Other Comment

Did NATO claim that it would attack Russia if Russian missiles aimed at Ukraine landed near the Russia-Ukraine border? No, that's not true: Poland's Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs stated that NATO is contemplating intercepting Russian missiles nearing the border of a NATO member state, following an incident where a Russian cruise missile entered Polish airspace on March 24, 2024, while targeting western Ukraine.

The claim originated from a video (archived here) posted by TikTok user @ichim.stefanel.vasilica8, on March 26, 2024. "We have a very serious matter at the moment," said Senator Diana Șoșoacă at the beginning of the video, translated from Romanian into English by Lead Stories staff, "because you know that there are many NATO troops that are placed on the border with Russia, in Ukraine. And the NATO troops announced as follows: If you drop bombs close to the border, we will attack you. Wow. But we have many Romanians there among the military and, more than that, we are very close."

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:


(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Thu Mar 28 14:37:24 2024 UTC)

There is no concrete evidence to support NATO making such a claim. The closest statement resembling this context occurred when an official X (formerly known as Twitter) account associated with the Polish Armed Forces mentioned that there had been a violation of Polish airspace at 4:23 AM by one of the cruise missiles launched by Russia against towns in western Ukraine, prompting the NATO member state to activate 'Polish and allied aviation' (archived here).

During an interview with online Radio RMF24 on March 26, Polish Secretary of State Andrzej Szejna discussed various concepts being analyzed within NATO. These included the consideration of shooting down missiles when they approach the NATO border, as reported in a summary published on the radio's website (archived here) and quoted by the Guardian and Kyiv Independent (archived here and here).

However, Szejna emphasized that any such action would require the consent of the Ukrainian side and careful consideration of the international consequences. He pointed out the complexities involved, particularly regarding the fact that NATO missiles would engage Russian missiles outside the Alliance's territory.

Szejna's discussion pertained to a specific scenario involving missiles originating from the Russian side targeting the border of a NATO member state, rather than the Russia-Ukraine border within Ukraine's territory.

Lead Stories has previously debunked other claims by Senator Diana Șoșoacă about the purported risk of Romania (or other NATO states) joining the war in Ukraine, here, here, and here.

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