Ukraine began joint military exercises with the United States (US) and other NATO member forces last week. Meanwhile Russia and Belarus are holding large-scale exercises that worry the West.
Lukashenko said he had several times discussed the situation in Ukraine with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin said the expansion of NATO’s military infrastructure in Ukraine crossed the line for Putin. Also read: Putin: US and NATO Should Be Responsible for Afghanistan Reconstruction
“You see, they dragged NATO troops there, into Ukraine. Under the guise of a training center, they actually created a base. The United States creates bases in Ukraine. It is clear that we need to react to this,” Lukashenko said.
“The Russian president and I have held and held consultations on this issue and have agreed that some measures should be taken there. Otherwise, tomorrow we will face an unacceptable situation, right on the border between Belarus and Russia.” Reuters on Tuesday (28/9/2021).
At the same time, he also blamed the West for what he said was a humanitarian disaster looming this winter, after migrants were left stranded and frozen on the Belarusian-Polish border.
Ukraine itself is not a member of NATO, but has long sought closer integration with Western militaries in hopes of one day joining the alliance, a move that Belarus’ main ally Russia has opposed. Read also: Russia maneuvers with missiles during joint Ukraine and US exercises