Poland will cut back on military missions abroad: President
August 16, 2013
Poland will cut back on military missions abroad and should focus instead on domestic defense, Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski said Thursday, signaling what appeared to be a shift in foreign policy.
During ceremonies marking Army Day in Poland, Komorowski, who hails from the ruling Civic Platform (PO) party, said, "We are moving away from the expeditionary policy over-eagerly and carelessly announced in 2007" by a previous government.
Komorowski called for "an end to a casual policy, of casually sending Polish soldiers to far-flung corners of the world."
He added that funds for the armed forces should be used "not for foreign missions but for the modernization of the Polish army so as to be able to defend our country."
Forty-one Poles have died in or as a result of being wounded in Afghanistan since Poland joined the the NATO-led international mission in that country in 2007.
Polish land forces in Afghanistan totaled 2,600 soldiers at one point. The numbers have since been scaled back and Poland currently has 1,600 soldiers and civilian workers there.
The last Polish forces will leave Afghanistan in 2014, when NATO and the United States plan to end their mission there.