United States and Poland Open U.S. Aviation Detachment in Łask
9 November 2012
Senior American and Polish officials took part in a ceremony establishing a United States Air Force detachment at Łask Air Base on Friday, November 9. President Barack Obama and President Bronisław Komorowski agreed in December 2010 to strengthen the U.S. –Polish security partnership through increased cooperation between Polish and U.S. air forces. The establishment of the U.S. Air Force detachment in Poland is an important example of Polish-American security cooperation, and is a practical means of strengthening the ability of American and Polish forces to conduct combined operations. This will mark the first full-time presence of U.S. troops on Polish soil.
The new U.S. Ambassador to Poland, Stephen D. Mull, took part in the ceremony, along with the Commander of U.S. European Command (EUCOM) and NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander, Admiral James Stavridis; the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Derek Chollet; and the Special Assistant to the Commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe (USAFE), Major General Stephen D. Schmidt. Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak, General Chief of Staff Mieczyslaw Cieniuch, and Air Force Commander General Lech Majewski represented Poland.
The mission of the Aviation Detachment (Av-Det) is to strengthen cooperation between the key NATO allies through regular joint training exercises and rotational deployment of U.S. military aircraft beginning in 2013.
While types of visiting U.S. aircraft will vary, the squadrons will include F-16 or C-130 planes, accompanied by up to 200 uniformed military personnel and civilian contractors. Aircraft and personnel will rotate on a quarterly basis. The presence of a U.S. Av-Det in Poland will also make it possible for Poland to host other Allied Air Force elements and to serve as a regional hub for air training and multi-national exercises.
For more information about the Aviation Detachment please visit the following links:
AV-DET FACT SHEET
U.S. POLAND AGREEMENT