Support our mission
Army personnel from the 10th Army Air and Missile Defense command team are given a ‘maintenance terrain walk’ in Baumholder, Germany on Feb. 1, 2022. According to reports on Saturday, Feb. 26, a new NATO battlegroup that includes Patriot missile air defense systems is being set up in Slovakia.

Army personnel from the 10th Army Air and Missile Defense command team are given a ‘maintenance terrain walk’ in Baumholder, Germany on Feb. 1, 2022. According to reports on Saturday, Feb. 26, a new NATO battlegroup that includes Patriot missile air defense systems is being set up in Slovakia. (Robert Fellingham/U.S. Army)

RZESZOW, Poland — A new NATO multinational battlegroup that includes the Patriot missile air defense system will be set up in Slovakia, officials announced Saturday.

The 1,200 troop-strong unit will include forces from several countries, including the U.S. and Germany, Peter Bator, Slovakia’s representative to NATO, said in a statement.

Poland, Slovenia, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands also will join the battlegroup in Slovakia. Germany and the Netherlands will contribute troops and the Patriot air defense system, Bator said. 

The move comes as NATO takes new steps the strengthen its position in central and southeastern Europe, where other battlegroups are also expected to be rolled out in the near future. France already has volunteered to lead a battlegroup in Romania.

The plans will resemble similar NATO military units that were set up in the Baltic states and Poland after Russia’s 2014 miltary intervention in Ukraine.

Moscow’s more recent buildup around Ukraine, and subsequent attack on the country launched earlier this week, has prompted NATO to take a wide range of steps in recent days to shore up defenses in Russia’s periphery.

On Friday, the alliance, for the first time in its history, activated elements of the NATO Response Force to reinforce member states in the east.

A U.S. soldier works near a Patriot missile battery at Al-Dhafra Air Base in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, May 5, 2021.

A U.S. soldier works near a Patriot missile battery at Al-Dhafra Air Base in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, May 5, 2021. (Jao’Torey Johnson/U.S. Air Force)

author picture
John covers U.S. military activities across Europe and Africa. Based in Stuttgart, Germany, he previously worked for newspapers in New Jersey, North Carolina and Maryland. He is a graduate of the University of Delaware.
twitter Email

Stripes in 7



around the web


Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up