The US ambassador to Poland welcomed the government’s decision. “Congratulations and thank you to Poland!” Stephen Mull wrote on Twitter. “The decision is a key step in cooperation in the sphere of security between Poland and the US.”
“The Council of Ministers, on the recommendation of National Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak, has selected the US Patriot missiles for Poland’s medium range missile defense system,” an official statement reads. “At the same time the Council of Ministers has authorised the Minister of National Defense to further negotiate and conclude the agreement with the US authorities on behalf of the government of Poland.”
Developed by Raytheon, the Patriot is used by the US Army along with fifteen partner nations, including NATO partners Spain, the Netherlands, Greece and Germany.
Poland is spending USD 8 billion on missile-defense and military-helicopter purchases. Raytheon’s Patriot missile-defense shield was selected as part of outgoing President Bronislaw Komorowski’s USD 40 billion effort to modernise the country’s armed forces.
Poland chose the bid over a rival European offering and one from the MEADS consortium led by Lockheed Martin
The missile shield is expected to be a part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s long-running project to deter missile attacks in Europe.