Celebrations related to transfer of command related to the Multinational Corps Northeast took place at the unit’s headquarters, in Stettin. In the presence of the Polish President, Andrzej Duda and Minister of Defence, Tomasz Siemoniak, General Manfred Hofmann took over the command of the unit, from General Bogusław Samol, who had been in charge of the Multinational Corps since December 2012.
Multinational Corps Northeast was formed back in 1999 in Stettin, as a shared Polish-Dannish-German NATO unit, with a little more than 200 soldiers serving at the base. According to the provisions made during the Newport Summit on 1st June 2015, significance of the unit went up, as it became a part of the highest readiness NATO components. Reinforced combat readiness of the Stettin-based NATO Corps resulted in increase of the number of personnel, working at the base (up to 400 persons of military staff), executed along with an infrastructural expansion.
Until the end of 2018, the NATO Corps is going to reach capability of commanding joint components, consisting of all types of the armed forces. One of the key tasks undertaken by Multinational Corps Northeast is to synchronize the operations undertaken by NATO Force Integration Units – the component which deals with coordination and planning of the joint exercises organized in the Mid-Eastern part of Europe. The individual elements of the above force are going to be stationed in Romania, Poland, Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia.
Decision pertaining the changed status of the Multinational Corps North East is well embedded within the wider perspective, when it comes to the NATO strategy related to creating temporary quick reaction force, also known as VJTF, and transforming the VJTF into the target unit. Wide scope of activities realizing that goal were undertaken by General Boguslaw Samol who became the commander of the Multinational Corps Northeast on 19th December 2012, through a direct transfer from the position of a deputy commander, he had been working at since 2nd April 2012.
Today, the Polish commander passed the command over the unit to the German General, Manfred Hofmann. Hofmann worked at numerous positions, both in the Bundeswehr, as well as at the German Ministry of Defence. He commanded the 21st Armoured Brigade and also worked at a position of the Chief of Staff of the German Land Forces Command. Directly before he took over the command of the Multinational Corps Northeast, Hofmann also worked as Deputy Director at the Federal Bureau dealing with the Personnel Issues of the Bundeswehr, located in Cologne.