Nato set to seal decision to boost troop presence in Poland and the Baltics

By bne IntelliNews June 14, 2016

Nato will seal a decision this week to send four battalions to the Baltic states and Poland, the alliance’s chief said on June 13. The move is Nato’s response to renewed Russian activity in eastern Europe, but the four countries that will host the 4,000 troops suggest more will be needed to deter Moscow.

In a move first signalled by the US media in late April, Nato will approve during a meeting in Brussels starting on June 14, of sending the battalions to Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. The alliance will then give the formal nod to the deployment, as well as other deterrents planned to be stationed in eastern Europe, during the Nato summit in Warsaw in early July.

The four eastern European countries – all of them bordering Russia – consider themselves on the frontline of what they perceive as Moscow’s aggression. They have been pushing for a greater Nato presence in the region since Russia annexed Crimea in March 2014.

“We will agree to deploy by rotation four robust multinational battalions in the Baltic states and in Poland,” Nato’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in Brussels on June 13. He added the battalions are part of a shift in NATO’s “defence and deterrence posture,” including a larger NATO Response Force, a new Spearhead Force and eight new small headquarters in the eastern part of the alliance.

“All together this strikes the right balance between a greater ability to reinforce, and a boost to our forward presence,” he added.

However, Poland and the Baltic states hinted the deployments will not be enough to deter Russia from considering aggression. “We cannot exclude [aggression] ... They might exercise on the borders and then switch to an invasion in hours,” Lithuanian Defence Minister Juozas Olekas told Reuters.

Alongside his regional peers, Olekas said he will try to convince other Nato states to help build an air defence system, the newswire reports. They are also wary of the strategic potential of Kaliningrad, the Russian exclave that sits to the west of Poland and Lithuania on the coast of the Baltic Sea.

The decision to send the battalions is just the latest in a series of pledges from Nato intended to assure eastern members they will not be left without support. In February, Washington announced a budgetary boost of $3.4bn (€3.11bn) to send extra heavy weapons, armoured vehicles and other equipment to the CEE region. The following month, an additional armoured brigade for the region was detailed.

Related Articles

Lithuania calls for further committments from Gazprom to end EU anti-trust case

Gazprom’s commitments to lessen the impact of its dominant position as a supplier of gas to Lithuania and other CEE countries are not sufficient and the European Commission should ensure they are ... more

Russia offers Latvian port a slice of the Nord Stream pie

The Latvian port of Ventspils has been asked to store and handle delivery of pipes for Nord Stream 2, the controversial Russian gas pipeline project, the chairman of the port said on April 20. The ... more

Latvia opens its gas market as it seizes control from Russia

The Latvian gas market opened up to liberalisation on April 3 following entry into force of a number of legal changes. Riga has fought hard to end control of the gas transmission and storage ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss