Poland’s Ambassador to the United States, Marek Magierowski, told CNN Thursday that sanctions on Russia should “last for a decade, maybe 15 years” following Moscow’s invasion and assault on Ukraine.
“I think that if we wanted to retaliate for that invasion against Ukraine with punitive measures and by crippling the Russian economy, we have to be determined and ready to uphold the sanctions in a longer term. Maybe they should last for a decade, maybe 15 years, because I'm afraid we are going to live with Mr. Putin for many years to come,” Magierowski told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour in an interview.
Magierowski said that Russian forces have committed “acts of barbarism in Ukraine” that he said were “war crimes, atrocities.”
“I do believe and I am confident that Mr. Putin and his cronies and all his closest aides will end up in the dock, in the Hague, in the International Criminal Court, because this is what he has already fully deserved,” he said.
When pressed on Poland not sending MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine, Magierowski told Amanpour that it was not a feasible strategy for the Polish government.
“We could not, and we cannot deplete the arsenal of our aircraft by one-third without any back up and compensation,” he said.
The Pentagon said Wednesday that it is bluntly opposed to a Polish plan to provide fighter jets to Ukraine. Poland's initial proposal, which officials verbalized Tuesday, was to deploy all its MiG-29 fighter jets to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia — but by first sending the jets to US Ramstein Air Base in Germany, also a NATO nation.
“We decided to put the aircraft at the disposal of the US government and transfer them. We announced our willingness and our readiness to transfer these aircraft to the NATO air base in Germany," Magierowski said. "The proposal has been rejected by our American partners who have come to the conclusion that it could be too escalatory and too risky, and actually this is what we were saying at the beginning of the debate about the Soviet made fighter jets at our disposal.”
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said Wednesday the intelligence community came to the conclusion that "the transfer of MiG-29’s to Ukraine may be mistaken as escalatory and could result in significant Russian reaction that might increase the prospects of a military escalation with NATO.”
Magierowski admitted to Amanpour that it’s “very hard to foresee a situation in which Russia would start making serious concessions,” in any diplomatic talks, but said that he did not believe that Putin’s forces were currently succeeding on the ground in Ukraine.
“Russia is losing this war right now. Not only in the hearts and mind of Europeans and Americans or the societies of the so-called free world but Russia is losing this war literally,” Magierowski told CNN.
“I don't know whether we will find a diplomatic solution, but maybe a military solution… I believe the Ukrainian army is capable of defeating the Russian army right now,” he said.