Nearly 600 U.S. soldiers with tanks to arrive in Poland, Baltics

Monday, September 29, 2014
By Paul Martin

Reuters.com
Fri Sep 26, 2014

(Reuters) – Nearly 600 U.S. soldiers accompanied by tanks and other vehicles will arrive in Poland and the Baltic states at the weekend for military exercises, the Polish defence ministry said on Friday.

The U.S. soldiers will replace a more lightly armed force of paratroopers and will take part in rotational exercises meant to show the United States’ commitment to NATO’s eastern allies, it said in a statement.

The ministry said the aim of the exercises, part of NATO’s Operation Atlantic Resolve, was to “guarantee the security of European allies in the face of the latest aggression of Russia in Ukraine.”

“The Americans are training for the deployment of forces and for cooperation with allies,” Artur Golawski, a spokesman for Poland’s armed forces, told Reuters.

Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia emerged from Soviet domination in the early 1990s and since then have become members of NATO and the European Union.

The three Baltic states were annexed by the Soviet Union in the 1940s, while Soviet troops stationed in Poland until the early 1990s ensured the country remained under de facto Soviet control.

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