Warsaw to ask Nato to increase presence in Poland says MoD

Blaszczak, whose position on Poland's political scene has strengthened with a recent promotion to a deputy prime minister role, said the conflict in Ukraine should convince sceptics to reassess their stance. Piotr Nowak/PAP

Poland will advocate for an increased Nato presence in the country in the face of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Mariusz Blaszczak, the defence minister, has said.

In an interview with Polska The Times newspaper, published on Saturday, Blaszczak said the upcoming Nato summit in Madrid "will have a special significance because the Russian aggression against Ukraine permanently remodelled the global security system."

Blaszczak, whose position on Poland's political scene has strengthened with a recent promotion to a deputy prime minister role, said the conflict in Ukraine should convince sceptics to reassess their stance.

"The summit in Warsaw (in 2016 - PAP) led to the establishment of battalion battle groups in Poland and the region with participation of allied forces and now we're advocating for decisions to be made in Madrid that would lead to a further increase of their potential as an element of deterrence and defence of Nato's eastern flank," the defence minister said.

Poland has been advocating for more Nato troops in the region and raising the readiness of the forces in case of danger.

"I can confirm that we're advocating for the deployment of a brigade group in Poland within Nato structures," he said.

Independently from Nato decisions, Poland has been stepping up its defence potential with a number of armament purchases and recent declarations to increase the number of professional soldiers to 250,000 from the current number of just over 110,000.

Poland has recently passed a law that will increase the defence spending as a share of the country's GDP to 3 percent from the Nato-recommended 2 percent level. 

Nato will hold a summit in Madrid on June 28-30.