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Poland to buy US rocket system for $414 million

AFP  |  Warsaw 

said Sunday it will buy mobile rocket launchers worth USD 414 million (365 million euros) from the United States, as seeks closer ties with amid concerns over a resurgent

The deal, due to be signed Wednesday, will "significantly increase the Polish army's capacities," told journalists Sunday, adding that delivery was expected by 2023.

Made by US giant Lockheed Martin, the HIMARS system can launch six guided rockets with a range of 70 kilometres (37 miles), or a single missile with a 300-kilometre range.

It is already being used by 19 countries and has been deployed in and against the Islamic State group, allowing US troops a precision attack ability even in poor weather when air attacks are hindered.

In March last year, already signed a USD 4.75 billion contract to purchase a US-made Patriot anti-missile system.

Poland's rightwing government has been pushing for the to open a permanent military base on its soil, where American troops are already stationed on a rotational basis as part of NATO operations.

However, the of the US Army said in September 2018 that might not be ready for a permanent military base because of an apparent lack of space to fulfil the training requirements for American soldiers.

Two years ago, NATO opened a counter-espionage hub in aimed at expanding the alliance's intelligence-gathering capabilities following tensions with over its 2014 annexation of Crimea.

The US-led alliance has also bolstered its forces in with four international battalions acting as tripwires against possible Russian adventurism in the region.

Poland this week is set to host US and for a two-day conference on security issues in the

and Jason Greenblatt, close advisors to US President Donald Trump, are also expected to attend the event starting Tuesday, along with Israeli

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, February 11 2019. 00:55 IST