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Stronger NATO presence a priority for Poland: President Duda

PR dla Zagranicy
Roberto Galea 13.02.2016 13:57
A stronger NATO presence on the eastern flank of the military alliance is a priority for Warsaw, Polish President Andrzej Duda told a security conference in Munich on Saturday.
Andrzej Duda (C) attended the conference on Saturday. Photo: Prezydent.pl/Andrzej HrechorowiczAndrzej Duda (C) attended the conference on Saturday. Photo: Prezydent.pl/Andrzej Hrechorowicz

Duda told the 52nd Munich Security Conference: “I think the most important [thing] for Poland now is strengthening NATO's presence in the eastern flank of the alliance. This is, in my opinion, the most important problem for Poland and for Eastern European countries now. Of course we have [several] problems in the European Union now: migration crisis, Brexit, and others.

“But our military security is now of [the utmost importance] when we see the situation in Ukraine, and when we heard from Russian politicians words like today,” Duda said, in his first major speech in English since he took office last year.

At the same conference, Russian Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev said: "One could go so far to say that we have slid back to a new Cold War”, referring to cooling diplomatic relations between Russia and the European Union.

Strengthening NATO's presence in Poland was part of Duda's pledges ahead of the May 2015 presidential election. “The border of NATO was for many years in West Germany, and after 1989, Europe changed. After a few years, we became a member of the alliance," Duda said.

"The next step should be to establish more bases, and increase the infrastructure of NATO in our part of Europe – in Poland, in the Baltic countries, in Romania, Bulgaria and others. (rg/pk)

Watch a video of the whole discussion here.

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