The White House said Wednesday that the United States would deploy 1,000 additional troops to Poland, a move that might raise security concerns from Russia.
“The United States and Poland have agreed on a framework to deploy an additional 1,000 troops to Poland,” the White House said in a statement.
U.S. President Donald Trump announced Wednesday during a joint press conference with visiting Polish President Andrzej Duda that the infrastructure for the 1,000 U.S. troops would be constructed by the Polish government, “at no cost to the United States.”
Duda said that the increased U.S. military presence in Poland is necessary to defend against Russia and solidify Poland’s ties to the West.
Poland, which joined NATO in 1999, currently hosts around 4,500 U.S. troops. It has been lobbying for a permanent U.S. military base on Polish soil, even offering to pay 2 billion U.S. dollars in costs.
Trump recognized Warsaw’s decision to purchase 32 F-35 fighter jets. A U.S. F-35 fighter conducted a flyover of the White House right before the joint news conference began.
Trump praised Poland’s fulfilment of the commitment to spending more than 2 percent of its GDP on defense, which the Trump administration has repeatedly demanded for other NATO allies.
Trump also noted that he is seriously considering visiting Poland in September.
Washington and Warsaw have been strengthening their security and diplomatic ties. The two countries are on the same page on multiple regional issues such as Iran nuclear issue, alleged Russia’s threat as well as the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project.
Moscow has voiced concerns about Warsaw’s intentions, saying NATO’s expansion toward Russia’s borders would destabilize Europe.