Poland set to move troops east

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Published: Monday 27th October 2014 by The News Editor

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Poland will move thousands of troops towards its eastern borders in a historic realignment of a military structure built in the Cold War, the country’s defence minister said.

Tomasz Siemoniak told the Associated Press the troops are needed in the east because of the conflict in neighbouring Ukraine.

“The geopolitical situation has changed, we have the biggest crisis of security since the Cold War and we must draw conclusions from that,” Mr Siemoniak said.

He said that at least three military bases in the east will see their populations increase from the current 30% of capacity to almost 90% by 2017, and that more military hardware will be moved to those bases as well.

He said it was not some “nervous or radical move” but that because of this “situation of threat we would like those units in the east of Poland to be more efficient”.

Although Poland joined Nato in 1999, most of Poland’s 120,000-member army is based along the country’s western border, as a relic of its former status as a Soviet bloc member.

The units in the east, like the air defence unit in Siedlce, have only 30% of jobs filled in line with a plan that calls for 100% of troops “only in the case of war”.

Published: Monday 27th October 2014 by The News Editor

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