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30 July 2021, 14:43

Defense minister: The West keeps trying to bend Belarus to its will

Viktor Khrenin
Viktor Khrenin

MINSK, 30 July (BelTA) – The West keeps trying to bend Belarus to its will. Belarusian Defense Minister Viktor Khrenin made the statement as Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko met with government officials on 30 July to discuss urgent issues of the public and political situation, BelTA has learned.

Viktor Khrenin said: “The military and political situation around Belarus remains complicated. The West represented by the USA and the European Union keeps trying to create conditions in order to dictate its will to us. Pressure in politics, information field, and economy continues. The military sphere does not sit idle: the NATO bloc continues reconnaissance activities against our country and stages combat training events for the armed forces of the NATO member states in the countries Belarus borders with.”

In his words, additional electronic reconnaissance posts are being deployed along Belarusian borders. Polish special operations forces are scouting out parts of the Belarusian border. Army exercises are being held to practice actions meant to support destructive forces in Belarus. Belarus' air borders are periodically violated. Three violations were registered in April-June 2021. The border service and the armed forces of neighboring countries often use unmanned aerial vehicles. These events can be part of preparations for provocative actions in near-border areas for the sake of creating new opportunities for discrediting Belarus in the international arena, the defense minister said.

Viktor Khrenin stressed that NATO staged 28 military exercises near the Belarusian border in H1 2021, up from 16 in H1 2020.

The official went on saying: “The active modernization of the armed forces of Poland and the Baltic states continues in order to improve their offensive capabilities and introduce Western technologies for arms manufacturing. Ukraine continues pursuing the policy in favor of the country's integration into NATO. It is most likely that in order to get additional dividends from Western partners Kiev will continue attempts to exploit the possibility of a Russian aggression from Belarus' territory. We expect their intensity to grow in anticipation of the Belarusian-Russian strategic army exercise Zapad 2021. Ukrainian leadership may organize various provocations on our southern border in order to get materials to accuse Belarus and Russia. In order to promptly respond to negative processes the Defense Ministry constantly keeps an eye on them and takes measures to enable the armed forces to implement a set of strategic deterrence measures based on force. Measures are being taken together with other government agencies to ensure the balance of military force in the regions in order to prevent an increase in the risk of the existing military dangers evolving into military threats.”

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