The United States plans to deploy around 1,000 soldiers to Poland as part of an effort to step up NATO's presence in Eastern Europe, President Barack Obama says.

"I can announce that the US will be the lead nation for the NATO presence here in Poland," he says after meeting Polish President Andrzej Duda in Warsaw, ahead of a summit of the military alliance's leaders.

"That means the US will deploy a battalion, roughly 1,000 American soldiers, here in Poland on a rotational basis to serve shoulder to shoulder with Polish soldiers," he adds.

The US also plans to headquarter in Poland one of its armored brigades, which is rotating through Europe, Obama says.

Update: Fri, 08/07/2016 - 19:02

NATO's new troop deployments to Eastern Europe

NATO leaders on Friday cleared the way for the deployment next year of four battalions to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, which feel threatened by Russia's actions in Ukraine.

The multinational battalions, which are expected to number up to 1,000 troops each, will be deployed on a rotational basis.

Details still have to be finalized, but here is some information on which countries plan to contribute troops where, based on initial announcements and media reports.

ESTONIA

Lead nation: Britain

Troop contributions:

- 500 from Britain

- up to 200 from Denmark

- around 150 from France, for six months

LATVIA

Lead nation: Canada

Troop contributions:

- about 450 from Canada

LITHUANIA

Lead nation: Germany

Troop contributions:

- about 500 from Germany

- about 200 from Belgium

- 100 to 150 from the Netherlands

- around 150 from France, for six months

- Luxembourg and Norway are also expected to send soldiers

POLAND

Lead nation: United States

Troop contributions:

- about 1,000 from the United States

- about 150 from Britain

Update: Fri, 08/07/2016 - 21:02 

Moscow has repeatedly warned that the eastward NATO expansion is threatening its national security. 

The Kremlin on Friday slammed the Western military alliance for being short-sighted and having a misguided focus on threats from Russia.

"If they need to ... stir up anti-Russian hysteria and Russophobia, then based on that emotion-evoking backdrop deploy air and ground forces close to Russia's borders, it is unlikely that we can find some reason for collaboration," the Kremlin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in comments carried by the Interfax news agency.

Some Russian officials have threatened a military response, but Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski dismissed as "absurd" suggestions that NATO has been acting threateningly.

"It's Russia that is pursuing the whole time an imperial policy," he said.

Moscow is also likely to be irritated by progress made on NATO's missile defence system in Europe. The alliance officially took over command and control of the shield from the United States at the Warsaw summit.

Latest news

Syrian opposition rules out future role for President al-Assad

The Syrian opposition said Friday it would not accept any role for President Bashar al-Assad in the future of the war-torn country, reacting to a recent US shift saying that removing al-Assad is no longer a priority for Washington.

Russian Army integrates breakaway forces of Georgian province

Parts of the small fighting forces of the Georgian breakaway province of South Ossetia have been placed under Russian military control, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Friday.

Czech Republic's Pilsner Urquell beer is now Japanese

Japanese brewing company Asahi completed its takeover of the Czech brewery Pilsner Urquell on Friday, Asahi said in a statement.

Judge approves 25-million-dollar settlement of Trump University case

A US district judge on Friday approved a 25-million-dollar settlement of lawsuits and state fraud allegations against Trump University, the US president's now-defunct business venture.

Former Thai premier Thaksin to junta on reconciliation: 'Cut me out'

Former Thai prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra on Friday announced that he is not interested in the junta-led reconciliation process, three days after the junta handed him a half-a-billion-dollar tax bill for his past business deal.

Dalic: We welcome possible deal between Agrokor and banks

The government welcomes the possibility of an agreement being concluded between the Agrokor food company and creditor banks, and the bill on vitally important companies is not a fallback plan but the result of the government's care for the overall economic and financial stability of Croatia, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy Martina Dalic told a press conference in Zagreb on Friday.

Croatia, China sign action plan for cooperation in agriculture

The Croatian and Chinese ministries of agriculture on Friday signed an action plan for cooperation in the field of agriculture for the period 2017-2018, the Croatian ministry said in a statement.

ZSE indices up, Agrokor shares in focus of investor interest

The Zagreb Stock Exchange (ZSE) indices on Friday rose by more than 1.8%, with stocks of the Agrokor food and retail concern being in the focus of investor interest again.

Berlin police defend handling of Berlin market attacker

Berlin police defended themselves on Friday against accusations that they stopped surveillance on Berlin Christmas market attacker despite knowing in June 2016 he was dangerous.

Croatia, creditors tailor emergency measures to save tottering giant

Croatia's tottering retail and food giant Agrokor reached an agreement with its creditors, putting its debts standby and allowing it to continue working during emergency restructuring, the Croatian branch of Austria's Erste Bank said Friday.

Agrokor's creditors say standstill agreement to go into force today

A standstill agreement regarding the Agrokor concern's existing financial obligations to banks will take effect on Friday, additional capital will be injected into the concern in the coming days and the concern will be actively restructured, which includes a change of its management, it was said on Friday after a meeting between Agrokor's suppliers and creditor banks.

Palestinians, UN slam Israel's new settlement plan

Palestinians, Israeli activists and the UN lambasted the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday, a day after it gave the go-ahead for the first new West Bank settlement in a quarter of a century.

South Sudan rebels release three abducted foreign oil workers

South Sudanese rebels have released three foreign engineers they abducted in early March in the oil-rich Upper Nile region, Foreign Affairs Ministry official Mawein Makol Arik said on Friday.

Turkish opposition: Imprisoned party chief has gone on hunger strike

The head of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition party has launched a hunger strike from prison.

European leagues threaten Champions League schedule clashes

The European Professional Football Leagues (EPFL) on Friday threatened schedule clashes on Champions League matchdays in an ongoing dispute with the governing body UEFA.

Danish court revokes citizenship of IS volunteer

A Danish appellate court on Friday stripped a man of his Danish citizenship for volunteering to fight for the extremist Islamic State in Syria.

Banks and Agrokor agree on key elements of standstill agreement

Member banks of the coordinating committee of financial creditors and representatives of the Agrokor food company have in principle agreed on key elements of a standstill agreement, which is expected to be signed later today, announcing changes in the company's management team, Erste Bank said in a statement on Friday afternoon.

Syrian man on trial in Sweden; mosque attack labelled terrorism

A Syrian man went on trial Friday in the southern Swedish city of Malmo, charged with terrorism and arson after an attack last year on a building used as an assembly hall by Shiite Muslims.