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Poland ready to pay $2bn for US military presence

Photo: AFP

Poland is ready to pay up to $2bn for deployment of a permanent US military base in its territory, onet.pl reports citing documents of the Polish defense ministry made public in the internet.

The documents reportedly contain information on possible deployment of military facilities and hospitals as well as schools and gyms for staff and their families. According to the documents, the proposal shows clear and insistent need for a permanent deployment of a US division in Poland and Poland’s obligation to render substantial support that can reach $1.5-2 bn.

The sum is supposed to cover significant expenditures for building necessary infrastructure and ensuring combat readiness. Besides, some infrastructure that the Polish defense ministry already has can be transferred to the US military. Warsaw says that it is ready to share the financial burden and make a solution more economically effective for the US government. A supplement to the document contains maps of Poland with possible locations of the base, transport hubs and existing military facilities.

The Polish defense ministry confirmed the documents are real and added that they are not secret. The defense ministry said that the proposal was sent to the US Congress without consultations with the Polish foreign ministry and President Andrzej Duda. Authors of he document state that it meets interests not only of Warsaw, but corresponds with the US military doctrine that says that Russia’s aggression is the key threat to the United States and global stability. It also mentions that the country meets NATO standards and that Poland is one of few countries that allocates 2% of its GDP as the NATO regulations claim. “With permanent presence, the USA and Poland can establish together a stronger, more stable alliance,” the document runs.

At the same time, the documents caused unambiguous response in the country. MEP and former deputy defense minister Janusz Zemke criticized the defense ministry for its actions calling publication of the document unprofessional.

To remind, now Poland hosts US troops and NATO corps (overall, about 4,000 US military) who are rotated. Earlier, the Polish foreign ministry stated that presence of the US forces in Europe is a basis of the security policy pursued by Warsaw. In March 2018, Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak announced a possibility of increasing the US corps in the country. After that, in April, Pentagon Chief James Mattis said the US was open for talks on the issue.

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