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German and Dutch Patriot Systems to be Deployed in Slovakia

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Written by Johannes Krause

The Associated Press (AP) reports that Germany and the Netherlands will deploy their armed forces’ Patriot Air Defence Systems in Slovakia. Notably, the deployment comes after an official request made by NATO to the two-member states; it is unclear whether Slovakia previously made a request to NATO. The deployment must be understood twofold: First, as conventional deterrence and second, as an exercise in signalling NATO’s commitment to its eastern member states.

Although the Dutch government has not yet given formal authorisation for the deployment, its military officials are already working together with their German counterparts on planning the deployment. Once formal authorisation is granted, around “150-200 Dutch troops will be moved to Slovakia” alongside the Patriot systems. No information was given regarding the size of the German contingent. This deployment will test the Dutch and German capability for interoperability. Nevertheless, both armed forces are building on their previous experience as a similar Patriot deployment was carried out between 2013 and 2015 in southern Turkey. During this deployment, the Netherlands and Germany were tasked with defending their fellow NATO-member state from missile attacks that could have been launched from civil war-ridden Syria.

The Netherlands and Germany were chosen because of their pre-existing experience and because relatively few European NATO members have access to the coveted Air Defence System. Only a few countries around the world have Patriot systems in their arsenal. In Europe, Greece is the only NATO member state that uses the air defence system, whereas Sweden, a non-NATO member state, has only recently purchased Patriot systems last year. Given ongoing global developments, more countries may decide to equip themselves with Patriot air defence systems. The air defence system, jointly produced by Lockheed Martin Missiles, Raytheon, and Fire Control, has a “range of approximately 70km” and “can intercept tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, advanced aircraft.” Accordingly, the Patriot air defence system excels at deterrence.


Army Technology. (2022, March 9). The Netherlands and Germany to deploy Patriot system in Slovakia. Army Technology News.