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Ukraine conflict: US to deploy Patriots to Poland, Germany and Netherlands to follow suit in Slovakia

The United States is to deploy Patriot to Poland, and the Netherlands and Germany are preparing the joint deployment of the air defence system to Slovakia. (Dutch MoD)

The United States will reposition two Patriot air defence batteries to Poland, and Germany and the Netherlands are planning to deploy their own Patriots to Slovakia.

The US European Command (EUCOM) announced on 9 March that its commander, General Tod Wolters, had directed US Army Europe and Africa to reposition the batteries at the invitation of Poland.

EUCOM said, β€œThis defensive deployment is being conducted proactively to counter any potential threat to US and allied forces and NATO territory. This is a prudent force protection measure that underpins our commitment to Article 5 [the collective defence clause of the North Atlantic Treaty] and will in no way support any offensive operations. Every step we take is intended to deter aggression and reassure our allies.”

The Dutch Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on its website on 8 March that the Netherlands and Germany were preparing the joint deployment of Patriots in Slovakia at the request of NATO. Dutch Defence Minister Kajsa Ollongren said the government cabinet in The Hague agreed in principle to deploy the Patriots. She added that this would involve the deployment of 150–200 air defence personnel as quickly as possible after a formal cabinet decision.

The Dutch MoD said the deployment's purpose is to protect the eastern flank of NATO territory against incoming projectiles, noting that the Patriot can destroy aircraft, helicopters, and ballistic and cruise missiles up to a range of 60 km and a height of 20 km.

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