Duda says Nato Article 5 is not theoretical, but binding and very practical

Maciej Kulczyński/PAP

President Andrzej Duda said on Tuesday in the Czech Republic. that Nato Article 5 is not theoretical, but binding and very practical, which was clearly demonstrated by the help of the allies after the terrorist attack on the United States on September 11, 2001.

Andrzej Duda met with the Czech President Milosz Zeman, who is ending his ten-year term in office, in the town of Nachod on the Polish border.

The politicians were asked how allied unity is affected by statements made by, among others, the Bulgarian President Rumen Radev who said that "delivering weapons to Kiev means putting out a fire with petrol".

They were also asked to comment on the statement of the Czech presidential candidate Andrej Babisz, who, when asked in a debate whether he would send Czech soldiers to help in the event of an attack on Poland or the Baltic states, replied that he wanted peace, not war.

"Please don't take some unfortunate and ill-considered statements too seriously," Zeman said.

"In the Czech Republic, but in a sense also in Bulgaria, there is an election campaign, here before the presidential elections, in Bulgaria before the parliamentary elections (...) And some statements, which may also be taken out of context, may act as an explosive charge," Zeman explained.

The Polish president added that "We are all members of the North Atlantic Alliance, where there is Article 5 in the North Atlantic Treaty and this Article 5 is very practical, down to earth, as clearly demonstrated by the terrorist attack on the United States, when the United States called on allies to help… so as you can see, the Treaty is binding and is not theoretical, it is practical."

Zeman said that he considers it absolutely obvious that in case Russia attacks Poland, the Baltic states or any other Nato member, then "just looking at the wording of Article 5, from the point of view of "self-preservation, it is important also in relation to the Czech Republic", the Czechs would be obliged and even willing to help.

Article 5 of the NATO Treaty states that: "The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all."