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Polish-US Experts Group Begins Work on Potential US Base in Poland - MoD

Sputnik News

18:32 04.10.2018(updated 19:30 04.10.2018)

WARSAW (Sputnik) - A Polish-US working group has begun studying the possibility of setting up a US military base in Poland, Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak said Thursday.

"The working group of experts from Pentagon and the Polish Ministry of National Defense has already begun work on details. [US] Secretary [of Defense James] Mattis also said that the US side is actively working on analyzing the details," Blaszczak said in Brussels after a meeting of NATO states' defense ministers.

The Polish defense chief added that he had already planned a new visit to Washington, adding that the potential base had not been discussed with other NATO members yet.

"This is a Polish-US project which is at the initial stage for now… For my part, there is a great interest. Three visits to Washington were about this, yet another visit to Washington will be about this. When we have reached common ground, then we will, of course, inform our allies," the minister said.

On September 18, US President Donald Trump said at a meeting with his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda that the United States was considering the establishment of a base in Poland. According to the US President, his Polish counterpart had offered to give more than $2 billion

toward the cost of the facility, also suggesting that it might be called Fort Trump.

Duda told the Sieci newspaper earlier this week that he first floated the idea of establishing a permanent military base with Trump on the sidelines of a NATO summit in July.

Andrei Kelin, the director of the Department for European Cooperation at the Russian Foreign Ministry, told Sputnik that the establishment of such a base would be a breach of the 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act, which forbids "permanent stationing of substantial combat forces" in eastern Europe.


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