Lukashenko orders that NATO and Poland “troop movements” be monitored on the border

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko on Thursday instructed the security forces to monitor “troop movements” by NATO and Poland on the border with this country amid the migration crisis of recent weeks.

At a meeting, Lukashenko emphasized that “the Ministry of Defense, the State Security Committee (KGB) and the border troops must control the movement of troops from OTAN and Poland,” according to the Belarusian news agency BelTA.

Lukashenko orders that NATO and Poland “troop movements” be monitored on the border
Lukashenko orders that NATO and Poland “troop movements” be monitored on the border

He emphasized that 15,000 military personnel, main battle tanks and armored vehicles were already in use in the area, while he denounced that this operation was carried out “outrageously” and “without notifying anyone”.

The President has also ordered that special attention be paid to aid to refugees on the border and warned that some camps have tried to import weapons and ammunition to provoke conflict.

The Belarusian Defense Ministry ordered on Wednesday to step up its air defense in the west of the country as tensions with Poland increased. He said the Air Force had stepped up its operations “both in the west and in the northwest”.

For his part, Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei denied in an interview with the Russian news agency Sputnik that Minsk had waged a “hybrid war” against the European Union (EU) by allowing thousands of migrants to travel across its borders.

Makei argued that what happened on the border with Poland was “the result of the ruthless policies of the EU” and “a consequence of the destruction of the state system of several states and the acceptance of refugees with promises to take them in”.

“Today the EU has radically changed that policy and tried to punish Belarus by accusing it of a hybrid war,” he said. “What hybrid war are you talking about? Belarus against the EU with its 500 million inhabitants? For our part, there is no war and there can be no war,” he emphasized.

With this in mind, he stressed that the Belarusian authorities were interested in resolving the migration crisis as soon as possible and recalled that in 2020 the bloc stopped funding projects to strengthen border infrastructure, whereupon Minsk suspended the readmission agreement.

“We proposed to the EU to hold consultations on this matter, but received a negative response. Since then we have proposed a dialogue hundreds of times, but they have never responded positively,” said the Belarusian Foreign Minister.

For this reason, it has influenced the fact that Belarus sees attempts to organize provocations on the part of neighboring countries. “The development of the situation does not depend on us. Hopefully common sense will prevail and the other side will understand that a way out of this situation needs to be found, ”he concluded.

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