Russian propaganda attacks on Poland continue

"The attempt to sow animosity between Ukrainians and Poles has been the key motive behind Russian disinformation against Poland," Zaryn said. Paweł Supernak/PAP

The Kremlin is continuing its propaganda attacks on Poland using the war on Ukraine as a pretext, a senior Polish security official has claimed.

Russia's propaganda has been spreading the narrative about Poland's alleged territorial ambition of annexing western Ukraine in order to create a Polish protectorate, Stanislaw Zaryn, director of the National Security Department, said on Friday.

Russia also claims that the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, is steered by Warsaw and is pushing Ukraine into Poland's hands, Zaryn added.

Other claims include alleged threats from Poland against Belarus and Ukraine, and Warsaw's policy aimed at fostering the break-up of Russia and the isolation of China.

"The attempt to sow animosity between Ukrainians and Poles has been the key motive behind Russian disinformation against Poland," Zaryn said.

To this end, Moscow has been using false narratives, such as Ukrainian refugees being a source of cheap labour for Poland, Ukrainians being favoured in Poland at the cost of Poles and Poland's and Europe's rising discontent with Ukrainian refugees who are causing more and more problems, the official also said.

"The Russian propaganda has trying to show Poland as a country that on the one hand is completely incapacitated by the West, and on the other hand as a state that is pushing the West towards a war with Russia owing to its Russophobia and hot-headedness," Zaryn continued.

Out of nearly 4 million Ukrainian refugees who have entered Poland since Russia attacked Ukraine on February 24, Poland is now hosting an estimated 1.5 million. Nearly two million have returned to Ukraine and thousands have continued their journey to the West.