PRESS TV Fri., June 14, 2019
Russia says a new US military deployment to Poland announced by President Donald Trump on Wednesday would force Moscow to take retaliatory steps.
Trump told Polish President Andrzej Duda on Wednesday that he had decided to send an additional 1,000 troops to Poland to join 4,000 forces already there.
The US will also send a squadron of MQ-9 Reaper Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance drones as well, he added.
The announcement drew response from Russia, which said on Thursday that “its military is tracking these announcements very closely.”Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow “is analyzing the information, and is doing what is necessary so that such steps in no way threaten the Russian Federation’s security.”
Sergei Ryabkov, a Russian deputy foreign minister, said Trump’s move probably reflected “aggressive” intentions.
Russia’s foreign ministry described Trump’s decision for more deployment as a betrayal of Russia’s core agreement with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in 1997.
Under the deal, NATO had agreed not to permanently deploy significant military forces on the territory of new member states.
“The headquarters structures that will be set up in Poland under this reinforcement will deliver much greater potential,” the Russian ministry said in a statement.
Russia, it said, could not “fail to take this into account in its defense planning and practical activities.”
“We see in this signs of preparation for further large-scale deployments,” it added.
Russian parliamentarians separately reacted to the decision, with one lawmaker threatening to make Poland a target in the event of a military conflict.
“In the event of any conflict, God forbid, the territory of Poland would become a clear target for a retaliatory strike, if there was suddenly an attack on us,” said Vladimir Dzhabarov, deputy head of the upper house of parliament’s international affairs committee.