Mariusz Błaszczak announced the move on Twitter, state news agency PAP reported.
“I signed a letter of request for the purchase of some 500 M142 HIMARS rocket launchers,” Błaszczak tweeted.
He added that the HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System) launchers would be used "to equip over 80 batteries of Poland’s Homar [Lobster] rocket system."
In February 2019, Poland's government signed a deal to buy 20 HIMARS artillery rocket systems from America for USD 414 million as part of a military modernisation drive.
These 20 HIMARS launchers are due to be delivered starting next year, together with ammunition as well as logistics, training and technical support, according to officials.
Depending on the ammunition, the launchers, which are manufactured by US defence contractor Lockheed Martin, have a range of 70 to 300 kilometres, the PAP news agency reported.
Poland strengthens military amid Ukraine war
Thursday’s announcement signifies a further strengthening of Poland’s military amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
It comes after Błaszczak on Tuesday announced the imminent purchase of six more batteries of the US Patriot anti-ballistic missile defence system.
In addition, Poland last month bought 250 Abrams battle tanks from the United States.
Also in April, the Polish defence minister visited America for talks with arms makers. He said at the time that Poland would step up its purchases of US military hardware in response to Vladimir Putin’s assault on Ukraine.
Thursday is day 92 of Russia’s war on Ukraine.
Source: IAR, PAP, wydarzenia.interia.pl