WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland will unveil a deal with Washington this week to bolster the U.S. military presence there, expecting more troops, command and logistics capability, though not quite a single big “Fort Trump” as Warsaw floated last year, President Andrzej Duda said.
Warsaw’s nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) government has sought more U.S. involvement in Poland since coming to power in 2015, as part of its effort to deter potential aggression from an increasingly emboldened Russia.
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When Duda was last in the United States in September, he proposed naming a new base after U.S. President Donald Trump and providing $2 billion in funding for it.
The United States already has troops in Poland as part of a 2016 agreement with the NATO military alliance in response to Moscow’s annexation of Crimea from Poland’s eastern neighbor Ukraine in 2014.
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The PiS has positioned itself as an ally of the U.S. administration at a time when other EU countries are wary of Trump and Poland faces mounting isolation within the EU over disagreements about its adherence to rule-of-law standards.
Speaking with Reuters ahead of a trip to Washington starting on Wednesday, Duda said the U.S. presence so far in Poland was a “reconnaissance period”.
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“Today we are speaking about a strengthening of a U.S. presence and about moving into a second phase,” he said in the interview, which was conducted on Friday for publication on Monday by prior agreement with the president’s office.
He said he expects a strengthening of command capabilities, logistics and special forces. “It’s an increase both in quantity and in quality.” A...
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