At a ceremony on Monday, Mariusz Błaszczak approved the creation of what will be the fifth division of the Polish land forces, state news agency PAP reported.
The defence minister, who is also a deputy prime minister, told those at the ceremony in the northeastern city of Białystok: “Our task is to build a strong Polish army to effectively deter an aggressor, to make sure that the aggressor doesn’t dare attack our country.”
More troops in eastern Poland
He added the government was seeking to “saturate” eastern Poland with troops.
Błaszczak explained that the new 1st Division would be stationed mainly in the northeastern Podlaskie region, between the 16th Mechanised Division in the northern Warmińsko-Mazurskie province and the 18th Mechanised Division in the central Mazowieckie region and the eastern Lubelskie province.
“The new division will consist of four brigades, each of which will have four battalions,” he added.
The defence minister specified that the new 1st Division would be headquartered in the city of Ciechanów and deploy soldiers in towns such as Łomża, Kolno and Siemiatycze.
Abrams tanks, Krab howitzers, K2 tanks
He announced that the troops would be equipped with “modern military hardware.”
The 1st Division’s armoured brigade is set to receive US-made Abrams tanks and South Korean K2 tanks, while the artillery brigade will be equipped with Polish-made Krab self-propelled gun howitzers, South Korean K9 howitzers and Polish-made Gladius reconnaissance and attack drones, reporters were told.
1st Infantry Division of the Legions
The new unit’s official name will be the 1st Infantry Division of the Legions, in tribute to a prewar Polish unit that distinguished itself during the 1920 Polish-Soviet War and later when battling the 1939 Nazi German invasion of Poland, officials said.
Monday is day 320 of Russia’s war against Ukraine.
Source: PAP, tvp.info, defence24.pl