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Denmark to play key role in Nato's Russia plans

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Denmark to play key role in Nato's Russia plans
Nato General Philip Breedlove said at a press conference in Kosovo on Wednesday that Russia was beefing up its troops on the Ukranian border. Photo: Armend Nimani/AFP/Scanpix
12:36 CEST+02:00
Nato is increasing its presence in Poland in a military build-up against Russia, and the plan will rely heavily on Danish forces.
Danish troops will play a “significant” role in Nato’s response to Russian aggression in Ukraine, Politiken reported on Thursday. 
 
According to recent plans announced by Nato General Philip Breedlove, the Nato base Multinational Corps Northeast, in Szczecin, Poland will be expanded into a permanent and enhanced Nato base that will be staffed by Danish, German and Polish troops. 
 
Breedlove’s plan calls for a significant increase in weapons, ammunition and rations at the base as well as an expansion that would allow the base to accommodate thousands of Nato troops in the event of a crisis.
 
Agner Rokos, the deputy commander of Danish troops in Szczecin, confirmed to Politiken that plans are underway to increase Nato’s readiness and response capability from the Polish base.
 
“This will mean a considerable increase in Danish personnel at the headquarters, which is currently made up of 20 men,” he said. 
 
Sten Rynning, a professor at the University of Southern Denmark’s Center for War Studies, said the plans would increase the Danish troops’ importance to Nato’s overall strategy.
 
“This will give Denmark a relatively significant role in Nato’s response to Russia,” Rynning told Politiken, adding that the new Nato base is another sign that tensions are continuing to build between Russia and Nato. 
 
On Wednesday in Kosovo, Breedlove said that Russia was “increasing” the number of troops and weaponry along the border with Ukraine.
 
“The number of troops along the (Ukrainian) border is increasing. It is well over 12,000,” Breedlove told reporters at the end of his one day visit to Kosovo, where he inspected the alliance’s peacekeeping mission.
 
“The number of battalion task groups, specials, Spetznaz (special forces) units, air defence units, artillery units are all increasing,” he said.
 
Breedlove will officially present his plans for the Szczecin base at the Nato summit in Wales in September. 
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