Secretary of State Mike Pompeo with Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz. Photo: Janek Skarzynski/AFP via Getty Images

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak signed an agreement on Saturday that paves the way for an increased presence of U.S. troops in the European country.

Why it matters: The deal is a part of the Trump administration's plan to withdraw some 12,000 troops from Germany and redeploy about 5,400 of them to other European countries.

Yes, but: The withdrawal has been met with some bipartisan opposition in Congress, as many lawmakers believe removing troops would encourage Russian aggression in Eastern Europe.

The U.S.-Poland Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) signed Saturday provides a legal framework for the countries "to enhance and modernize our capabilities, in support of the NATO Alliance’s collective defense."

  • It also gives U.S. forces to access specific Polish military installations to enhance the the sites' capabilities and facilities and lays the groundwork to deploy some 1,000 more U.S. troops to the country. 4,a500 U.S. troops are currently based in Poland, per ABC News.
  • It will cost Poland around 500 million zlotys ($135 million) per year, according to Reuters.
  • The U.S. has similar agreements with other NATO members, such as Belgium, Hungary, and Romania.

What they're saying: A State Department spokesperson said in a statement to Axios the agreement "is a milestone on our defense partnership which enables an increased U.S. military presence in Poland." 

The big picture: Pompeo and Polish Foreign Affairs Minister Jacek Czaputowicz also discussed neighboring Belarus, where demonstrators protesting the results of the country's recent presidential election have clashed with riot police.

Go deeper: Pompeo denounces U.N. Security Council for rejecting Iran arms embargo extension

Go deeper

Sep 21, 2020 - World

Trump announces new Iran sanctions in effort to maintain international arms embargo

Photo: Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images

President Trump signed an executive order on Monday that would impose sanctions on any person or entity that contributes to the supply, sale, or transfer of conventional arms to or from Iran or is engaged in providing training and financial support related to those weapons.

Why it matters: The executive order is the first step by the Trump administration to put teeth into its claim that international sanctions on Iran were restored over the weekend, one month after the U.S. initiated the "snapback" process under a United Nations Security Council resolution.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m. ET: 32,381,243 — Total deaths: 985,104 — Total recoveries: 22,285,437Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4:15 p.m ET: 7,015,242 — Total deaths: 203,329 — Total recoveries: 2,710,183 — Total tests: 98,481,026Map.
  3. States: "We’re not closing anything going forward": Florida fully lifts COVID restaurant restrictions — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus.
  4. Health: Young people accounted for 20% of cases this summer.
  5. Business: Coronavirus has made airports happier places The expiration of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance looms.
  6. Education: Where bringing students back to school is most risky.
Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

White House pushes to uphold TikTok ban

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The U.S. Department of Justice on Friday filed legal opposition to TikTok's request to delay a ban on downloading the app, with a federal judge in Washington scheduling a hearing on the request for Sunday morning.

Why it matters: The White House could have simply postponed the ban on its own for another week or two, as it did last Friday. This move suggests it's seeking to use the ban as leverage in ongoing negotiations.

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