Poland Invests $2.5 Billion Into Fortifying Border With Russia And Belarus

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland is investing about $2.5 billion to step up security and deterrence on its border with Russia and its ally Belarus, the prime minister said Saturday.

Donald Tusk said work on the Shield-East project which includes building proper military fortifications has already begun. Poland is on the eastern flank of NATO and of the European Union and Tusk stressed it bears additional responsibility for Europe's security.

“We have taken the decision to invest into our safety and first of all, into a safe eastern border, some 10 billion zlotys ($2.5 billion),” Tusk said.

“We are opening a great project of the construction of a safe border, including a system of fortifications and of the shaping of terrain, (of) environmental decisions that will make this border impenetrable by a potential enemy,” Tusk said.

“We have begun these works, to make Poland’s border a safe one in times of peace, and impenetrable for an enemy in times of war,” he added.

He was addressing Polish troops in Krakow, in the south, to mark 80 years since the allied victory in the Battle of Monte Cassino against the Nazis, during World War II.

Poland’s previous right-wing government built a $400 million wall on the border with Belarus to halt massive inflow of migrants that began to be pushed from that direction in 2021, but the current pro-EU government says it needs to be strengthened.

Poland is a staunch ally of Ukraine in its defensive war against Russia’s invasion.