US was warned in 2009 about Russian threat to Crimea

18:12, 02 April 2015
Politics
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The United States was warned as far back as November 2009 that Russia might attack Crimea, according to a diplomatic cable released by the group Wikileaks.

REUTERS

The cable details information given by former Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski to the then U.S. Ambassador to Poland, Lee Feinstein, on November 20, a month after the latter took up his post in the Polish capital Warsaw.

In the cable text, Sikorski said Poland was concerned about possible aggression from Russia, and that Poland wanted “strategic assurance” from the United States regarding the defense of Poland.

Sikorski also said that “in the event of a Russian attack against Crimea or another part of Ukraine, Poland would find it difficult to stand by,” according to the leaked cable.

However, Sikorski also said that “he recognized that the probability of such an attack was low,” the cable text reads.

Sikorski also “asked how the U.S. and NATO would provide Poland with the ‘strategic assurance’ [U.S.] Vice President [Joe Biden] mentioned in his public statement during his October 22 visit to Warsaw,” the cable reads

“Sikorski said it was important to increase the U.S. presence in Poland, although he acknowledged that there will not be a large U.S. deployment of troops,” the text goes on.

Sikorski himself tweeted a link to the cable on Thursday, writing in his tweet “Proof that US was warned about potential Russian aggression against Ukraine and asked to prepare.”

A link to the cable can be found here.

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