WASHINGTON- US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin has ordered the deployment of 500 more troops to Europe to bolster NATO’s capabilities against Russia.
The measure has been taken in order to “augment” forces that have already been deployed to Europe.
“These additional forces are going to be positioned to respond to the current security environment in light of Russia’s renewed aggression against Ukraine, and again, to reinforce deterrence and defensive capabilities of NATO, particularly the eastern flank,” a US official said.
Earlier in January, US President Joe Biden authorized the activation of some 8,500 troops to assist NATO forces in eastern Europe amidst rising tensions between Russia and Ukraine. So far, about 3,000 troops have been deployed in Poland, Germany and Romania.
The official said the shipment being sent this week includes KC-130 refueling aircraft that will be sent to Suda Bay in Greece, an air support operations center that will be deployed in Romania and Poland, as well as ordinance and maintenance companies to Germany.