Poland becoming ever more important hub for NATO in region – president
Poland is becoming an increasingly important hub for the NATO and US military presence in the region, President Andrzej Duda said on Thursday.
The Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, President Andrzej Duda, and the Minister of National Defence, Mariusz Błaszczak, took part in a staff briefing of the Defence Ministry and the Armed Forces of the Republic of Poland, organised at the Presidential Palace in Warsaw on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Poland’s membership in NATO.
During the briefing, the president pointed out the Alliance continues to be the foundation for cooperation in the entire Euro-Atlantic area, despite some of tensions which are emerging between the EU and the US.
"Poland will always concur with strengthening the deterrence potential and defence of the Alliance. At the same time, Poland will engage itself in projects which develop the defence of Europe, such as permanent structural cooperation and the European Defence Fund, and always strive to complement NATO," Duda emphasised.
Referring to his visits to military units in Żagan, in western Poland, and Orzysz and Elbląg, in northern Poland, the president said that they were an opportunity for him "to confirm that Poland is becoming an increasingly important hub for the NATO and US military presence in our region." "We see this role not only in terms of Poland's security, but also in terms of the security of the entire eastern flank and the Baltic Sea basin, and therefore also of the whole of Europe," stated Duda. (PAP)
Minister of Defence Mariusz Błaszczak thanked the military commanders for their hard and demanding service and good cooperation. "We must always remember that we are creating one team, working for the common good, which is the security of our homeland and our citizens," he underlined.
"I'll be awaiting, above all, an acceleration in purchases of weapons and equipment for the Polish Armed Forces. Priority tasks will also include the efficient formation of the new 18th Mechanised Division, the formation of the Territorial Defence Force and cyberspace defence forces," the head of the Defence Ministry told the participants of the briefing.
He said that in 2018, six steps were taken towards a more modern and more effective Polish military. "We provided adequate financing, created an effective command system, increased the number of troops, remedied shortcomings in the modernisation of armed forces, took care to combat cyberspace threats and maintained good relations with key allies," Błaszczak said.
"We'll continue this progress this year, and our actions will strengthen the sense of security of Polish women and men," he added.