Presidents Duda and Trump sign military declaration

Polish President Andrzej Duda and US President Donald Trump in New York on Monday signed a declaration to increase the presence of US troops in Poland. The meeting was held on the sidelines of the 74th UN General Assembly.

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In the declaration, Poland and the US state that they will continue to strengthen their strategic and defence relations to improve the security of both countries as well as NATO as a whole.

The declaration signed by both presidents also includes detailed information about the conditions of increasing US Army presence in Poland. It lists towns where military bases and training centres are to be located.

The Polish locations for the US military named in the declaration include the south-western city of Wrocław, the town of Łask in central Poland and the southern town of Lubliniec.

The location for a US armoured brigade battle group is still being discussed. The latest document adds details to a previous declaration signed by Mr Duda and Mr Trump in June, which confirmed the presence of 4,500 US soldiers in Poland and announced the deployment of about 1,000 more in the future.

Poland's north-western town of Drawsko Pomorskie was designated for the main location of a battle training centre to be used by Polish and US armed forces. Strachowice, a western district of Wrocław, will be the location of an air base. A squadron of US unmanned aerial vehicles will be located in Łask.

The village of Powidz, central-western Poland, will be the location for an air battle brigade of a combat logistics battalion. Lubliniec is to become home of a special forces facility, while Poznań will host the headquarters of the forward division command and a support group for the US Army.

Poland to cover part of the costs of US military presence

“Poland will cover part of the costs of the presence of US soldiers on its territory,” said US President Donald Trump during the meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda.

Poland is also to build the necessary infrastructure, Trump added after signing the declaration on the increased presence of US troops.

Visa Waiver programme for Poles

When asked about the prospects for visa-free travel to the US for Polish citizens, Mr Trump said this could happen very soon. He added that according to reports from US Ambassador in Warsaw Georgette Mosbacher, Poland has now met the visa waiver criteria.

Visa-free travel to the US can be granted only if the visa refusal ratio for a given country is below 3 percent. Until now, Poland's refusal ratio was above this threshold.

Trump announces Poland visit soon

US President Donald Trump also announced that he will visit Poland soon. Mr Trump said he had fond memories of his last visit to Poland.

Mr Trump was originally scheduled to visit Poland at the beginning of September, among others to attend observations of the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of World War II, but said he was forced to change his plans owing to hurricane threats in Florida.

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