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Poland has been a member of NATO since 1999. To see related acronyms about this country, please check ABBREVIATIONFINDER where you can see that POL stands for Poland. The defense, which is based on general military duty with an initial service of 9 months, comprises (2006) 141,500 men with 234,000 in reserve. The reorganization carried out after the fall of the Wall in 1989 and the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact sought, in addition to adapting the organization to the CFE's lower staffing framework, including: to create high-level alliances (equivalent to NATO's Rapid Deployment Forces) grouped in southeastern Poland. After 1999, the reorganization is slow, mainly for financial reasons.

Military of Poland

The defense consists of an army of 89,000 men, 277,000 fully manned, with four mechanized divisions and five independent mobile brigades. The Navy has 12,300 men, 24,000 fully manned, with 5 submarines, 7 larger and 16 smaller fighter vessels, 5 landing craft and a 2,000-man naval aircraft with 18 fighter aircraft. The Air Force comprises 30,000 men, 49,000 men fully manned, with 142 fighter aircraft and 18 attack helicopters. Semi-military security forces amount to 21,000 men. The equipment is semi-modern and mainly of Soviet origin, but is slowly being replaced by NATO equipment.

Defense costs fell from 8.1 to 1.9% of GDP in 1985-2006. Poland participates in a number of UN peacekeeping efforts. Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina (EUFOR II), Ivory Coast, Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia, Iraq, Lebanon, Liberia, Serbia, Montenegro, Sudan, Syria/Israel (UNDOF) and Western Sahara.

Poland's defense overview

It is not compulsory first-time service in Poland. In 1999, Poland joined NATO. Poland has close defense policy cooperation with the United States, which has deployed a battery of Patriot missiles in the northern part of the country. In May 2011, the two countries signed an agreement on US military presence in Poland. Along with the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia, Poland participated in the 2003 invasion of Iraq, where there were mostly 2,500 Polish soldiers. The Polish force was withdrawn in 2008.

Poland has defense cooperation through the Visegrad Group and with the countries on the eastern flank of NATO countries in Europe. NATO contributes to defense through the Enhanced Forward Presence operation.

The total force figures for Poland's armed forces are 117,800 active personnel (2018, IISS). In addition, 73,400 semi-military police and border guards come.


The army has a strength of 61,200 active personnel. Materials include 637 tanks (247 Leopard 2, 232 PT-91 and 158 T-72), 427 self-propelled artillery, 1636 storm- armored vehicles, 257 armored personnel vehicles and 435 self-propelled artillery, eight of which are self-propelled air defense artillery. In addition, the Army has heavy artillery, short-range anti-aircraft missiles, anti-aircraft artillery and 126 helicopters, of which 28 Mi-24 combat helicopters.

Air Force

The Air Force has a strength of 18 700 active personnel. Material comprising 32 fighters of a MiG-29, 66 fighter aircraft (48 F-16 and 18 Su-22), 46 transport, 68 trainers and 77 helicopters. In addition, the Air Force has long range air defense missiles.

The Navy

The Navy has a force of 7,000 active personnel. The fleet includes three tactical submarines (one of the Kilo class and two of the Kobben class), two frigates of the Oliver Hazard Perry class, four patrol vessels, 21 minesweepers, eight landings and 20 logistics and auxiliary vessels. In addition, the Navy has 10 maritime patrol aircraft, four light transport aircraft, 27 helicopters and coastal defense missiles.

International operations

In 2018, Poland participated in NATO operations in Afghanistan (Operation Resolute Support) with 315 personnel, in Kosovo (KFOR) with 252 personnel, and has deployed 160 personnel in Latvia (Enhanced Forward Presence).

Poland also participated in UN operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO) with an observer, in Kosovo (UNMIK) with an observer, in South Sudan (UNMISS) with an observer, and in Western Sahara (MINURSO) with two observers.

In addition, Poland participated in the EU operation in Bosnia and Herzegovina (EUFOR) with 39 personnel.

Poland is a member of the UN and most of the UN's special organizations, including the World Bank and the World Trade Organization (WTO). The country is also a member of the OSCE Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the Council of Europe (from 1991) and the OECD - Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (from 1996). Poland was a member of the former cooperative organizations of the Warsaw Pact and Comecon. The country entered into a Partnership for Peace Agreement with NATO in 1994 and became a full member in 1999. Poland joined the EUMay 1, 2004 in the first pool of new members from the former communist countries. The EU Border Control Agency (FRONTEX) is headquartered in Warsaw. The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) has offices in Warsaw.

Poland was a member of the UN Security Council in 2018–2019. It was the sixth time Poland was a member of the UN Security Council.

Poland has 88 embassies, 35 consulates, eight permanent delegations to international organizations and one representative office (to the PLO).

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