Putin's 'partial mobilisation' an attempt to 'save face' says president

President of Poland Andrzej Duda Peter Foley/PAP/EPA

The partial mobilisation announced by Russian President Vladimir Putin shows that Russia is weak, Andrzej Duda, the president of Poland, said in an interview with a US public television station that aired on Wednesday.

Andrzej Duda told PBS that Putin had declared that Ukraine would be conquered in 72 hours. "However, they failed to seize the whole of Ukraine," he added. "You can see this as an attempt to save face."

The president pointed out that the "partial mobilisation" announced by Russia was also causing "a horror among his society because thousands of Russian soldiers have already died in Ukraine."

"There will be further thousands following," said Duda. "This is going to be the policy of the Russian authorities right now and, so, we can see the weakness of Russia in this respect."

When asked if the West would remain united in face of the economy as it is now and with winter coming, Duda replied that the situation was "very challenging" and concerned with the energy crisis, inflation, and the food crises caused by Russia.

He pointed out that the West, however, had to consider what was most important and if it was worthwhile to allow Russia to occupy an independent state, a country that wants to be free, democratic and Western, in exchange for more convenient life and lower prices.

"If Russia succeeds, it will not stop. Its ambitions reach the Baltic states, my country - Poland, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, all countries that were once under its influence," he said. "Either this is what we want or we say 'no' to Russia and accept the inconveniences."