Poland's defense minister has officially launched self-defense courses for women, saying that training by military instructors will increase individual and national security.

Antoni Macierewicz has repeatedly stressed that the nation's security has decreased amid neighboring Russia's assertiveness. He is strengthening various forms of national defense and recently added a new military force, the Territorial Defense.

Macierewicz insisted Saturday that the no-weapons self-defense courses for women have to do with their personal security and not with military defense. But he said that well-trained women will contribute to national security.

Macierewicz spoke in the central town of Tomaszow Mazowiecki, where the nationwide courses were launched with training for about 30 women, Polish citizens aged over 18.

Macierewicz said that thousands of women have signed up for such training in 30 cities.