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Belarusian Defense Ministry: Russian troops continue to arrive in the country

by The Kyiv Independent news desk January 5, 2023 5:52 PM 1 min read
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Russian forces are continuing to deploy personnel, weapons, military, and special equipment to Belarus, according to the Belarusian Defense Ministry statement published on Jan. 5.

In addition to coordinating combat activities, joint flight and tactical training would also be held to increase the combat readiness of aviation units from both countries, the ministry added.

The deployment is said to be part of efforts to ensure the "military security of the Union State."

Russia and Belarus created the Union State, a binational confederation, in 2000. It remained a formality until recently, but the two countries have stepped up talks on merging their state institutions and markets since 2019.

Belarus has participated in Russia's aggression by allowing Russia to use its territory for attacks against Ukraine. However, Belarusian troops have not been sent to Ukraine yet.

At the same time, General Oleksandr Pavliuk, Commander of the Forces and Means of Defense of Kyiv, has announced that Ukrainian military forces have formed a special fighting group on the border with Belarus, ready to defend against any potential offensive action.

“The multi-level system of protection of Ukrainian troops will not allow them (invading soldiers) to go beyond the Belarusian border,” Pavliuk said.

Pavliuk emphasized that a multi-level protection system has been established, including fortified positions and long-term defense structures, making it very difficult for any Russian and Belarusian troops to cross the border. The defense system spans approximately 1,000 kilometers of total fortified lines, he said.

In an interview with The Economist on Dec. 15, Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zaluzhny said that Russia is almost certainly preparing for a new large offensive in spring, which could be a second attempt at taking Kyiv from the north.

With the world looking away, Russia quietly took control over Belarus

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