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Minister: the goal of modernising army is Poland's ability to defend itself

PR dla Zagranicy
Roberto Galea 17.05.2017 07:44
The final aim of modernising Poland's armed forces is the ability to defend the country by itself, Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz said on Tuesday.
Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz (C) at the Jelcz factory on Tuesday. Photo: PAP/Maciej KulczyńskiDefence Minister Antoni Macierewicz (C) at the Jelcz factory on Tuesday. Photo: PAP/Maciej Kulczyński

Macerewicz signed a contract with the Jelcz truck manufacturer for the delivery of 500 trucks for the Territorial Defence Army.

According to the Polish defence ministry and the Polish Armaments Group, which owns Jelcz, the contract is valued at over PLN 420 million (EUR 100.6 million). The value of guaranteed orders for 97 vehicles is PLN 81.5 million (EUR 19.5 million), with the option of purchasing 403 additional trucks for PLN 338.5 million.

“The ultimate goal of the programme to modernise and restructure the army, which we are currently implementing, is to obtain its own independent defence of its territory, its borders and its people for the first time in decades,” Macierewicz said.

“That is why we are increasing the number of soldiers, building a Territorial Defence Army, [and] modernising our army. That is why Poles are ready to spend money. So that Polish children are born in safe families so that we can live in safe country,” he added.

Last year Macierewicz said that the Territorial Defence Army will enhance and complement the capabilities of the regular military and that it will also teach patriotism and commitment to local communities.

The period of service is planned for one to six years and may be extended. The soldiers will receive a monthly allowance for service, improving their qualifications and readiness for immediate reporting for duty - PLN 500 (EUR 115) for an ordinary soldier and over PLN 600 (EUR 139) for an officer.

The ministry wants the Territorial Defence forces to be nearly 53,000 strong in 2019. It estimates that the cost of establishing and maintaining the forces in 2016-19 will be PLN 3.6 billion (EUR 834 million). (rg)

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