Report says Army's operational command failed to protect Polish airspace

A report into a mysterious military object, believed to be a missile, found in a forest near the northern city of Bydgoszcz has concluded that the Polish Armed Forces operational command was negligent in its duties to protect Polish airspace, a Defence Ministry statement has said.

The unidentified object was found in late April and its origins remain a mystery although there are suspicions it could be an unarmed Russian cruise missile that went off course when it was fired to confuse Ukrainian air defences.

According to the Polish Defence Ministry, the missile fell to earth on December 16, 2022. But an investigation was only launched after the missile was found.

"The conclusions are convergent with the results of a review, which has been carried out by the Ministry of National Defence and handed over to the Supreme Audit Office (NIK)," the ministry wrote on Friday evening.

The ministry also said that the report, which had already been handed over to the president and the prime minister, "is a detailed analysis of reports and statements by commanders of the security services who are connected to the discovery of a mystery military object in Zamosc near the northern city of Bydgoszcz."

The ministry wrote that the conclusions are proof of negligence on the part of the operational command of the Polish Armed Forces, who, in accordance with appropriate laws, is responsible for the protection of Poland's airspace.

Mariusz Blaszczak, the Polish defence minister, said on Thursday that the operational command had failed to inform him about an unidentified object entering Polish airspace.