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On Saturday, the United States State Department announced that Americans fleeing Ukraine ahead of a potential invasion by Russia will now be welcomed into Poland — but they must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination, as well as their U.S. passport to gain entry into the country.
The Daily Wire reported Saturday that President Joe Biden “ordered 160 members of the Florida National Guard out of Ukraine to new positions in Europe. The guardsmen had been stationed in Ukraine to train and advise Ukrainian forces as part of Joint Multinational Training Group-Ukraine, Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said Saturday, according to Fox News.”
“They are departing Ukraine and will reposition elsewhere in Europe,” Kirby said. “The Secretary made this decision out of an abundance of caution – with the safety and security of our personnel foremost in mind – and informed by the State Department’s guidance on U.S. personnel in Ukraine.”
That decision comes after National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan advised all Americans in Ukraine on Friday to flee the country, as they most likely will not be rescued by American forces if fighting starts:
Sullivan also warned Americans in Ukraine to immediately leave the country before a potential Russian invasion shuts down commercial means of travel. Sullivan warned Americans that the U.S. military would not be entering a war zone in Ukraine to evacuate American citizens should they be trapped during the invasion.
“We don’t know exactly what is going to happen, but the risk is now high enough, the threat is now immediate enough that this is what prudence demands. If you stay, you are assuming risk with no guarantee that there will be any other opportunity to leave and no prospect of a U.S. military evacuation in the event of a Russian invasion,” Sullivan said.
“The risk is now high enough and the threat is immediate enough that prudence demands that it is the time to leave now while commercial options and commercial rail and air service exists, while the roads are open. The president will not be putting the lives of our men and women in uniform at risk by sending them into a war zone to rescue people who could have left now but chose not to,” he added.
Where exactly they were to go was their choice, but on Saturday, Poland opened their borders to Americans in Ukraine with the aforementioned vaccine caveat.
“The security situation in Ukraine continues to be unpredictable due to the increased threats of Russian military action and can deteriorate with little notice,” the State Department said in a press release. “U.S. citizens in Ukraine should depart immediately using commercial or other privately available transportation options.”
“Poland has indicated to the U.S. government that U.S. citizens may now enter Poland through the land border with Ukraine,” the government agency added.
While “no advanced approval is required,” according to the press release, the U.S. government encouraged Americans “traveling into Poland by land from Ukraine to cross at the Korczowa-Krakovets or Medyka-Shehyni border crossings.”
U.S. citizens simply need to present “a valid U.S. passport and proof of COVID-19 vaccination,” according to the U.S. government. “Travelers are also encouraged to present a negative test result from a PCR or antigen COVID-19 test, which will facilitate entry into Poland.”
According to the U.S. government, a Russian invasion into Ukraine could occur anytime within the next week.