Poland needs at least two more multi-role squadrons says defence minister

Mariusz Błaszczak: We need at least another two squadrons of multi-role aircraft. Tytus Żmijewski/PAP

The Polish armed forces are in need of at least two more squadrons of multi-role combat aircraft, the defence minister said on Thursday.

Speaking on public radio, Mariusz Blaszczak explained that so far no decision had been taken on what type of aircraft they should be comprised of but he stressed the importance of reinforcing the Polish armed forces in order to deter an aggressor.

Poland currently has 48 F-16 fighters and 32 F-35s on order, the first of which will reach Poland next year, Blaszczak said.

"We have 48 FA-50s ordered; 12 of those aircraft will arrive this year, some are already in the Polish Air Force, but they are still too few," Blaszczak said. "We need at least another two squadrons of multi-role aircraft. What kind of planes they will be - we are working on the details."

During the opening of an international defence exhibition in the central Polish town of Kielce on September 5, President Andrzej Duda announced that next year the Polish government plans to spend PLN 137 billion (EUR 29.60 billion) on defence, representing 4 percent of the country's GDP.

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