U.S. Patriot missiles will be dispatched in Poland in 2009, the country`s defense minister said on Tuesday while on an official visit to Ukraine, RIA Novosti reported.
“Patriot missiles will be in Poland in 2009, at first temporarily, and from 2012, permanently,” Bogdan Klich said.
The United States and Poland signed a formal agreement on the deployment of 10 interceptor missiles on Polish soil on August 20, which followed the signing on July 8 by the U.S. and Czech foreign ministries to station a U.S. radar in the Czech Republic as part of a planned missile defense shield in Central Europe.
Washington had to commit to measures to ensure Poland`s security, including the deployment of the Patriot missiles, before Warsaw would agree to host the interceptor base.
Moscow has consistently expressed its opposition to the U.S. missile shield, saying it threatens its national security. The United States says the shield is designed to thwart missile attacks by what it calls “rogue states,” including Iran.