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Details of Belarus president's visit to internal troops unit revealed

President 16.03.2018 | 14:27

MINSK, 16 March (BelTA) – In the run-up to the 100th anniversary since the internal troops of the Interior Ministry were established, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko visited unit No.5448, BelTA has learned.

The head of state is known to frequently change the initial itinerary of his working trips in the country. Certainly, it gives a bit of pain to people in charge of organizing these trips, yet it allows the head of state to see an objective picture, in particular, the places, which have not been polished for a presidential visit.

On 16 March the president changed his mind just like that. Alexander Lukashenko's motorcade did not enter the unit's premises via the front entrance. Instead the motorcade entered via the gate intended for the motor pool and support facilities. The president went to see in what conditions the vehicles were kept. He asked what weapons and hardware the unit and the internal troops as a whole use.

It turned out some of the garages were vacant. The unit was established back in the USSR time and naturally everything was built in a big way back then. The number of vehicles the garages can fit is just superfluous in modern conditions. Alexander Lukashenko gave instructions to think about ways to utilize the spare premises of the internal troops unit, which is located not far from Minsk's downtown. “It is a huge territory. Think about what we can put here and how we can use it,” urged the head of state.

After that the president went to the local canteen. He was told what the personnel were having for lunch and what foods travel rations contain. It turns out travel rations contain cookies, juice, tinned meat, porridge, tinned fish, pea soup, chocolate, sweets, paste, tinned milk, and coffee.

Alexander Lukashenko was made familiar with the operation of the canteen, had a few words with the cooks, who were surprised at the head of state's decision to sample the dishes. On that day Leningrad pickle soup, beef in sweet and sour sauce, buckwheat porridge, and kompot were on the menu for the unit's personnel.

After leaving the canteen the president talked to some of the personnel outside and had a look at a personnel drill session.

After that Alexander Lukashenko went to the unit headquarters where he was informed about the fulfillment of instructions to improve the unit's mission capabilities and about the tasks the unit handles.

Problems with housing families of the personnel were also mentioned. A 132-apartment house (for-profit housing) and two apartment houses (co-funded construction) have been built since 2015 for internal troops personnel and their families in need of better housing. As many as 197 apartments were built for internal troops personnel in various parts of Belarus in 2015-2018 using state support. As many as 268 rental apartments were built in this period, too. Design and exploration work for building a hall of residence at premises of unit No.3214 in Minsk is supposed to be finished in 2018 in line with the state investment program.

The president was made familiar with living conditions of the personnel. He went to see a special training classroom where a class was in session. He also saw a recreation and information room and an exercise room.

One could see photos of friends and families as well as neatly placed phones on top of the nightstands in the sleeping area. Belarusian Deputy Interior Minister, Chief of the Internal Troops Yuri Karayev explained that mobile phones are not forbidden per se but the troops can use only the models without Internet capability because social networking and instant messaging can be detrimental to performance in the line of duty. Alexander Lukashenko noted it was a common global trend since phones, which are connected to the Internet, can theoretically be used to track the movements of individual troops and entire units as a whole.

After that the president saw what apparel and gear the internal troops use. Alexander Lukashenko saw uniforms fit for various tasks and conditions. The uniforms are made using hi-tech fabrics for comfort and high functionality.

Alexander Lukashenko was also made familiar with some of the weapons, military hardware, and special tools used by the internal troops. In particular, the president saw armored vehicles, special-purpose vehicles, buses and cars, firearms, individual tools and gear.

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