President, NATO head discuss NATO activity during epidemic


NATO's tasks during the coronavirus epidemic were the subject of a Wednesday videoconference between Polish President Andrzej Duda and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, head of the President's Office Krzysztof Szczerski has told PAP.

Duda and Stoltenberg agreed that the epidemic has not impaired the Alliance's deterrence and defence capacities, and stated that Poland, as well as other NATO members, could feel fully secure, Szczerski said.

"The pandemic has not influenced NATO's defence abilities. The Alliance's defence potential stands in full readiness, Poland and the remaining NATO members can feel fully secure under the allied system. The pandemic has no effect on our ability to deter and to defend the entire territory of the Alliance," Szczerski told PAP.

Szczerski said that Duda and Stoltenberg also discussed the forms of mutual aid forwarded by the NATO members to one another, and their needs in connection with the epidemic. He added that such aid projects were coordinated by the Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre (EADRCC).

Describing the aid in more detail, Szczerski said it mainly involved logistics, the transportation of necessary equipment and protective materials, and medical help. In this context, he mentioned Polish medical missions in in Italy, Slovenia and the US.

Szczerski said that Duda and Stoltenberg also discussed the employment of the Polish-commanded Multinational Chemical, Biological Radiological and Nuclear Defence Battalion (MN CBRN BN) for anti-epidemic operations in NATO countries.

Szczerski reported that the talks also focused on attempts to undermine NATO's unity and efficiency by means of disinformation, and stated that both Duda and Stoltenberg considered measures against disinformation an important task for the Alliance.

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