Poland discusses heavy weaponry deployment with US

14 June 2015 (Last Updated June 14th, 2015 18:30)

The US and Polish governments are reportedly discussing the deployment of heavy American weapons in warehouses in the Eastern European country.

US and Polish governments are reportedly discussing the deployment of heavy American weapons in warehouses in the Eastern European country.

The move forms part of US plans to secure allies in Eastern Europe and the Baltic states in the wake of Russia's military intervention in neighbouring Ukraine.

Polish Defence Minister Tomasz Siemoniak said: "The US is preparing a set of various measures, and among them the placement of heavy weaponry in Poland and other countries will be very important.

"It's relatively easy to move soldiers. It would be good, however, if the equipment was near the area of potential threat."

According to the New York Times, the US is likely to send main battle tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, and other heavy weapons to equip as many as 5,000 soldiers in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, and Hungary.

Pentagon spokesman Army Colonel Steve Warren said the country is yet to decide on the deployment, but noted that the US military has increased the pre-positioning of equipment for training and exercises with its Nato allies and partners over the past few years.

"The US military continues to review the best location to store these materials in consultation with our allies."

Warren said: "The US military continues to review the best location to store these materials in consultation with our allies.

"At this time, we have made no decision about if or when to move to this equipment."

However, US defence officials noted that the country is expected to approve the proposal before the Nato defence ministers' meeting in Brussels, Belgium, this month.

Siemoniak also confirmed that a rotational presence of US forces is expected to be maintained in the country at least until the end of 2016.