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Polish tank battalion aims to join NATO response force

08.11.2023 13:30
A Polish tank battalion says it is training to be included in the NATO alliance’s “spearhead force” from next year.
Photo:X/1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade

The 1st Warsaw Tank Battalion, part of the 1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade, is carrying out military drills in the southeastern town of Nowa Dęba, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

Throughout this week, NATO officials will conduct a “combat readiness evaluation” of the Warsaw tank battalion, drawing from the lessons of the war in Ukraine, according to the Polish military.

The Polish unit, which is equipped with German-made Leopard 2A5 battle tanks, aims to train cannon shooting, also at night-time and with reduced visibility, as well as coordination among troops and other aspects.

Meanwhile, logistics teams will be practising supplying the tank crews with fuel, ammunition and food.

If the 1st Warsaw Tank Battalion passes the combat readiness evaluation, it will become part of NATO’s spearhead force on January 1, Capt. Jacek Piotrowski from the 1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade told reporters.

The NATO spearhead force, also known as the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF),” includes troops from Britain, Albania and Spain, the PAP news agency reported.

The force is able to deploy within three days to respond to any challenges that may arise, including crisis management and collective defence, according to NATO officials.

The VJTF includes land troops, as well as air, maritime and special-operations forces.

NATO decided to set up the spearhead force at the alliance's Wales summit in 2014, in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea earlier that year.

Russia seized the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in early 2014.

On February 24, 2022, Moscow launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine by land, air and sea, starting the largest military conflict in Europe since World War II.

Wednesday is day 623 of Russia’s war on Ukraine.


Source: PAP, NATO