MINSK, 19 November (BelTA) – The level of Belarus' military cooperation with the country's strategic ally – the Russian Federation – is very high. Belarusian Defense Minister Viktor Khrenin made the statement in an interview with the TV channel Al Jazeera, BelTA has learned.
The official said: “The agreements that exist and that we are adopting now directly with the Defense Ministry and my colleague, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu are aimed at preserving peace, first and foremost. Readiness and training levels of the Russian army definitely deserve praise and pride now. We are glad that we have such an ally. Last year forced an even tighter alliance. It turned out that we don't have friends and the neighbors are aggressive.”
The Belarusian defense minister mentioned the transparency of military training events staged by Belarus and Russia. The Belarusian-Russian strategic army exercise Zapad 2021 was mentioned as an example. “Such exercises can be predicted for the next 100 years. Our presidents made this decision in 2009 – to arrange this military exercise in one of the two countries every two years: in 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2021… And so on. They are no threat to anyone. We train our army. And the president says that the army is meant to be trained. We raise our troops to the relevant training standards,” the Belarusian defense minister said.
Viktor Khrenin also noted that Belarus keeps an eye on rearmament in neighboring countries, primarily the rearmament of the Russian army, and is intent on keeping up with the standards. “It is very important for us that the Russian army has the combat experience they willingly share with us. It is also an important component within the framework of development of military science, theory, and practice,” he noted.