US to sell helicopter gunships to Poland amid growing threats from Russia and Belarus

The US will deliver more than 90 AH-64E Apache helicopters to Poland. (AFP) (SAM YEH /)

Following increasing threats from Russia and Belarus, The United States on Monday approved the sale of Apache attack helicopters to Poland for a value of 12,000 million dollarsan agreement with an ally that supports Ukraine, which is at war with Russia after being invaded.

The manufacturer Boeing to supply Poland with 96 AH-64E Apache helicoptersthe US State Department notified Congress.

Poland decided last year to buy Apache helicopters to replace its Soviet-era fleet.

The sale “will enhance Poland’s ability to deal with current and future threatsproviding a credible force that is capable of deterring adversaries and participating in NATO operations,” the State Department said in a statement.

Poland has supported US-led efforts to assist Ukraine after the Russian invasion, and much of the US arms supplied to kyiv enter the country through Polish territory.

The sale cements the relationship between the United States and Poland, whose government had previously clashed with President Joe Biden’s administration over issues including LGBTQ rights and media freedom.

In the bulletin, the US State Department called Poland a “force for political stability and economic progress in Europe.”

Poland denounces the growing threat from the Russian and Belarusian regimes (Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, photo shared by the Kremlin via AP)
Poland denounces the growing threat from the Russian and Belarusian regimes (Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, photo shared by the Kremlin via AP) (Mikhail Klimentyev/)

After the arrival of mercenaries from the Wagner group in Belarus, the Polish government has been warning about the threat posed to its country, and the region, by the collaboration that Minsk is providing to Putin’s Russia in the framework of the invasion of Ukraine. Weeks ago, Warsaw denounced that two Belarusian helicopters violated its airspace.

Faced with this situation, the Minister of National Defence, Mariusz Blaszczakordered “increase the number of soldiers on the border and allocate additional forces and resources, including helicopter gunships.”

The government reported what happened to NATO.

The Polish Ministry of Defense claimed that in recent times Russia and Belarus “have intensified their hybrid activities against Poland.” “Due to possible further provocations, we call for responsibly disseminating and commenting on information that may be used by the Russian and Belarusian regimes.”

The President of Poland, Andrzej Duda.  (Europe Press)
The President of Poland, Andrzej Duda. (Europa Press) (Christophe Licoppe/EU Commission/)

Poland, a member of NATO and the European Union (EU), fears for security on its eastern border with Ukraine and Russia’s ally Belarus.

Those fears have grown since Wagner’s mercenaries settled in Belarus after his short-lived rebellion in Russia weeks ago.

The Polish-Belarusian border has been in tension for several yearswhen large contingents of migrants from the Middle East and Africa arrived there to try to enter the EU through Poland and Lithuania.

The Polish government accuses Russia and Belarus of using migrants to destabilize Poland and other EU countries. It calls migration a form of hybrid warfare and has erected a high wall along part of its border with Belarus.

(With information from AFP and EFE)

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