Last month, a White House official told public broadcaster Polish Radio that the United States was not planning to station nuclear weapons in countries that joined the alliance after 1997. Poland has been a member of NATO since 1999.
But, according to the Polish president's top foreign policy aide, Jakub Kumoch, Moscow "rendered invalid" a 1997 NATO-Russia agreement prohibiting the deployment of permanent NATO forces in Eastern Europe by invading Ukraine in February.
“We're very much interested in the deployment of NATO forces in Poland and we're interested in participating in the nuclear sharing program,” Kumoch told private TV broadcaster Polsat News on Friday.
Nuclear sharing is a NATO program that is part of the alliance's nuclear deterrence policy. It makes nuclear warheads available to member states that do not have such armaments on their own. Since November 2009, under nuclear sharing, US nuclear weapons have been located in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey.
According to a report this week by the Politico news service, the United States has accelerated plans to deploy an upgraded version of its nuclear gravity bomb to Europe amid increased tensions over Russia’s threats to use a nuclear weapon in Ukraine.