President Duda: HIMARS system will boost Poland's security
The purchase of the US missile artillery system HIMARS will lead to the strengthening of the Polish army's defence potential as well as the security of our part of Europe and the eastern flank of NATO, President Andrzej Duda said Wednesday.
An agreement on the purchase of US HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System) self-propelled rocket artillery was signed in Warsaw in the presence of President Andrzej Duda and US Vice-President Mike Pence. The price for 20 launchers with ammunition is USD 414 million.
President Duda said that the aim of the modernisation programme is to supply the Polish army with modern equipment also used by armies of other NATO member countries. The President strongly stressed that the HIMARS system is a weapon which has already been tested in combat conditions.
He stressed that this is the first stage of the modernisation programme. "I believe that we will continue to develop our military potential, that after the purchase of the Patriot system, this is the next stage in the development of our defence. I believe that we will continue with the purchases," said Andrzej Duda mentioning helicopters and other fighter and transport aircraft.
The President announced that by 2030 at the latest the Polish defence budget should increase to 2.5 percent of GDP and assured that Poland is a credible NATO member that fulfils its obligations.
Vice-President Mike Pence addressing the ceremony said: "We are with you, we will stand with you, and the United States of America stands with Poland as a part of the most successful mutual defence alliance in the history of the world, and we always will."
Today, "the world is even a more dangerous place today than it was since the fall of Communism a quarter-century ago. And to confront the threats that we face today, the people of Poland know, and the people of the United States know, that the free world needs the members of NATO to be strong and united. And so we are. We stand together in defence of our alliance and all that we hold dear. And each member nation, we know, has a vital role to play," stressed Mike Pence.
"At the heart of our NATO Alliance is a solemn promise that an attack on one is an attack on all. But to keep this oath requires preparation, it requires investment. And for every NATO member to uphold their commitment to our common defence, we need to work together," noted the US Vice-President.