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Newly-Elected President Duda Urges NATO to Increase Presence in Poland

Poland's newly-elected President Andrzej Duda called on NATO to increase its presence in the country during his first address to parliament on Thursday, a RIA Novosti correspondent reported.

A Polish soldier stands near US and Poland's national flags and a NATO flag in Swidwin, northern west Poland, April 23, 2014 - Sputnik International
NATO Will Not Create Permanent Bases in Poland
WARSAW (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, Duda officially assumed office as president of Poland during a joint session of both houses of parliament in Warsaw.

Duda won the presidential elections on May 24 after garnering over 51 percent of the popular vote. His opponent in the Polish presidential elections was former President Bronislaw Komorovski.

"We should unambiguously raise the question — we need guarantees from NATO. They are not only necessary for Poland but also for the whole of Central and Eastern Europe, which has found itself in a difficult geopolitical situation. It is necessary to strengthen NATO's presence in this part of Europe, including in our country," Duda said.

The president added that he had already discussed the issue with Poland's NATO allies and the bloc's representatives and expected to receive the required guarantees at the next NATO summit, due to be held in Warsaw in July 2016.

At the same time, Duda emphasized the need to actively develop "good relations with our neighbors, as they are the guarantors of peace and security."

President-elect Andrzej Duda speaks during a press conference in Warsaw, Poland June 11, 2015 - Sputnik International
Duda Officially Takes Office of President of Poland
Poland’s former President Komorowski said in June that his government hoped that permanent NATO bases would soon replace the rotation-based allied presence on Polish soil.

In recent months, the Polish and Ukrainian governments have put increased pressure on Washington for security safeguards from NATO in the wake of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine.

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