The alliance’s Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, said on Monday that the alliance would send four multinational battalions to Poland and the Baltics, which all fear potential Russian aggression.
Some 4,000 troops will be deployed to the four countries in total, according to estimates by NATO officials. The exact number of troops and the national composition of the battalions will be decided and announced at NATO’s upcoming summit in Warsaw in July, officials say.
Such a decision by NATO defence ministers would be in line with an announcement in late May by Polish Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz, who said, after meeting Stoltenberg in Warsaw, that NATO would station four battalions in Poland and the Baltics.
Stoltenberg had travelled to Warsaw ahead of a 8-9 July summit of the Western military alliance in the Polish capital.
Following the meeting, Macierewicz said: “Our conversation confirmed that four groups of combat battalions will be stationed on a rotating basis in Poland, as in the Baltic countries, which will constitute an important element of an extended permanent NATO presence in the East.”
He added that one of the battalions would be stationed in Poland and the rest in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.