The Belarusian Defense Ministry announced that it is deploying "units of special operation forces" to the border with Ukraine due to an alleged threat coming from the Ukrainian troops on the Belarusian border.
"The group of troops amassed by the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the Southern Operational Direction with a total number of up to 20,000 people also requires a response from us. In order to ensure the security of the Republic of Belarus in the Southern direction, units of the special operations forces are deployed in three tactical areas," said the Belarusian Defense Ministry in a statement.
The Belarusian military claims that the United States and its allies are building up their military presence near the borders of Belarus.
"The group of troops deployed 6 months ago has grown more than 2 times both in quantitative and qualitative terms. The appearance in the waters of the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas of a group carrying sea- and air-based cruise missiles, an increase in the number of aircraft in Poland and the Baltic countries indicates a growing threat to the Republic of Belarus," the Belarusian Defense Ministry said.
Chief of the General Staff of the Belarusian Armed Forces, First Deputy Minister of Defense Viktor Gulevich said that the Defender-Europe exercises are held in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, which are expected to involve up to 20 thousand people and a large amount of equipment.
"Together with this exercise, seven more exercises are being held in the territory of countries bordering Belarus. Among other things, they train to use reconnaissance and sabotage forces, the landing of troops, the use of special operations forces. All this clearly does not indicate the peace-loving nature of these exercises," the Chief of the Belarusian General Staff emphasized.
"Proceeding from this, the Armed Forces of Belarus have developed a set of measures aimed at countering possible threats. As part of the second phase of the readiness check, battalion tactical groups have been deployed to the Western and North-Western operational areas. To strengthen them, air defense units, missile troops and artillery are being moved forward, which will ensure their combat functioning," Viktor Gulevich said, noting that from today, under his leadership, two territorial defense areas that will perform tasks to protect strategically important facilities are being inspected.