New Territorial Defence forces will be established in Poland early next year under plans outlined by Defence Minister Antoni Macierewicz in parliament on Thursday. MPs are to decide on Friday whether to back the plans.
Macierewicz said that the Territorial Defence Army will enhance and complement the capabilities of the regular military and that it will also teach patriotism and commitment to local communities.
The period of service is planned for one to six years and may be extended. The soldiers will receive a monthly allowance for service, improving their qualifications and readiness for immediate reporting for duty – PLN 500 (EUR 115) for an ordinary soldier and over PLN 600 (EUR 139) for an officer.
The ministry wants the Territorial Defence forces to be nearly 53,000 strong in 2019. It estimates that the cost of establishing and maintaining the forces in 2016-19 will be PLN 3.6 billion (EUR 834 million).