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Lukashenko suspends Belarus's involvement in Conventional Armed Forces treaty

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk May 29, 2024 9:27 AM 2 min read
Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko attends a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, in Sochi, Russia, on Sept. 15, 2023. (Mikhail Metzel/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)
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Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko signed a law suspending Belarus's involvement in the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), which was designed to establish limits on the number of arms and equipment in NATO and Warsaw Pact countries.

The law was registered in Belarus' online legal portal on May 29.

The CFE Treaty was negotiated between NATO and Warsaw Pact countries at the end of the Cold War to limit the size of forces that could be used in a swift offensive.

The treaty was signed in Paris in November 1990 and was initially agreed upon by 16 NATO members and six countries of the former Warsaw Pact, including the USSR.

Belarus's suspension was approved by the Council of the Republic, the upper house of the Belarusian parliament, on May 6, after being adopted by the House of Representatives, the lower house, in April.

The law states that the suspension "does not mean Belarus' withdrawal from it or the cessation of internal procedures in the Armed Forces related to its implementation."

Russia formally withdrew from the CFE in November 2023, prompting NATO to announce it would suspend the treaty in response.

"While recognizing the role of the CFE as a cornerstone of the Euro-Atlantic security architecture, a situation whereby Allied States Parties abide by the Treaty, while Russia does not, would be unsustainable," NATO's press service wrote.

Putin wants to involve Belarus in nuclear drills
During his visit to Belarus, Russian President Vladimir Putin plans to discuss the participation of the Belarusian military in Russia’s non-strategic nuclear drills, the Russian state-owned news agency RIA Novosti reported on May 24.
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