18:26 Mar. 31, 2016
Andrzej Duda says Eastern Europe needs Alliance's military presence
President of Poland appealed once more for a greater NATO presence in Central and Eastern Europe during an address on March 30 at the National Press Club in Washington.
His appeal, on the first day of a three-day visit, comes in the lead-up to a NATO summit in Warsaw this July.
"For the first time in Europe since World War II, a change in borders has occurred by force," Duda said, referring to the Russian Federation's annexation of Crimea.
"Thus there are serious concerns that the time of peace in our part of Europe is over," he continued. "If we claim that NATO is alive, then NATO must respond to what is happening.We want the actual military presence of NATO, with soldiers coming to Central and Eastern Europe on a permanant basis."- President say.
The focus of Duda's visit is the 4th Nuclear Security Summit, which is being attended by representatives of 56 countries.
Duda argued that "we should demand" that Russia withdraws from Crimea.
Russia has declined to send a representative. President Duda has no meeting scheduled with President Barack Obama, a factor which the Polish government has tried to play down the importance of, but which has inspired much debate in Poland, in the light of Poland's constitutional crisis.