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Poland to call for more NATO troops around Suwałki Gap: deputy FM

27.06.2022 11:15
A Polish deputy foreign minister on Monday said that Poland would ask for a bigger NATO presence around the Suwałki Gap, a strategic land corridor near Russia’s westernmost territory of Kaliningrad.
Marcin Przydacz.
Marcin Przydacz. PAP/Radek Pietruszka

Marcin Przydacz made the statement in an interview with public broadcaster Polish Radio, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

The deputy foreign minister was asked about Poland’s expectations regarding the NATO summit, which starts on Tuesday in Madrid, Spain.  

New Strategic Concept for NATO

Przydacz replied: “We expect NATO to adapt to new challenges, to the new reality.”

“There is a war going on at NATO’s border - NATO’s Strategic Concept must be changed and adapted to the new reality,” the deputy foreign minister added.

“NATO must prepare itself, also in terms of planning, for what is happening,” Przydacz said.    

Call for more NATO troops on eastern flank, around Suwałki Gap

He added that Poland would be pushing for “a bigger allied presence on NATO’s eastern flank.”

Przydacz also stressed that Poland would raise the issue of the Suwałki Gap.

He told Polish Radio: “It’s not just a Polish issue. It’s also an issue for other allies who recognise that the few dozen kilometres between Kaliningrad and Belarus represent a weak point on NATO’s geo-political map.”

Przydacz stressed: “And so we’ll be advocating an increased allied presence there, both in Lithuania and the Baltic states, and in Poland.”

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Friday that Poland and the Baltic states wanted to see a stronger NATO defensive presence in the Suwałki Gap, a strategic stretch of land near Russia’s westernmost region of Kaliningrad.

Earlier this month, the Polish government said it would push for more NATO troops on the eastern flank, to be stationed in permanent bases.

The Madrid summit

The Madrid summit, scheduled for June 28-30, will feature heads of state and government from NATO’s 30 member countries, as well as representatives from Australia, Finland, Georgia, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, Sweden, the European Council and the European Commission, according to officials.   

Monday is day 123 of Russia's war on Ukraine.


Source: PAP, portalsamorzadowy.pl