MOSCOW, August 17. /TASS/. The US increasing its military presence in Poland aggravates the situation near Russia’s Western borders and facilitates an escalation of tensions, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement published on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website on Monday.
"We would like to point out once again that increasing the US military presence in Poland does not solve any security issues, on the contrary, it aggravates the difficult situation near Russia’s Western borders, facilitating an escalation of tensions and increasing the risk of inadvertent incidents," she said.
Zakharova added that NATO’s claims that the military expansion is not of a significant nature is taken by the Russian side "as an attempt to distort reality." "The implementation of the American-Polish agreement will help qualitatively strengthen the offensive capability of the US forces in Poland," the commentary reads.
However, this agreement was not a surprise to Russia, as it formalizes the deal reached by US President Donald Trump and Polish President Andrzej Duda back in 2019. Zakharova noted that "not only is the blatantly anti-Russian nature of this documents not disguised, it is fueled by American and Polish officials. The approved package of measures is fully in line with the recent NATO summits that have set the course for "deterring" Russia, creating division lines and aggravating tensions in Europe, while abandoning the joint work on the goal proclaimed in OSCE documents after the end of the Cold War - forming a common space of cooperation and trust on the continent," the statement says.
Zakharova reminded that these US plans contradict the Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and Russia signed in 1997, changing the security conditions in Europe. "The US once again demonstrates that they are ready to abandon their obligations within multilateral instruments and disregard the opinion of the majority of European states if their own interests dictate it. This fully discredits the statements made by NATO officials claiming that this alliance is a provider of security and that it is interested in lowering tensions in Europe. Meanwhile, the concrete offers of Russia on how to achieve de-escalation in the area of Russia-NATO contact remain unanswered," the diplomat lamented.
"We call on NATO member states to abandon their stance on confrontation with us and to return to restraint in the spirit of the Russia-NATO Founding Act. It is also clear that the need for a substantive and honest dialogue on the issues in the sphere of European security and on recovering military contacts has been pressing for a while," the diplomat concluded.
Poland and the USA inked a defense cooperation deal in Warsaw on Saturday, signed by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Polish Minister of National Defense Mariusz Blaszczak. The signing ceremony took place at the presidential palace attended by Polish President Andrzej Duda. In accordance with this deal, US military presence in Poland will be expanded and will acquire a permanent status.