Belarus Bolsters Border Security Amid Rising Tensions with Ukraine and NATO

Belarus Bolsters Border Security Amid Rising Tensions with Ukraine and NATO
# 05 February 2024 00:38 (UTC +04:00)

Belarusian Special Forces have strengthened security along the border with Ukraine, according to Deputy Commander of the Special Operations Forces (SOF) Brigade of the Belarusian Armed Forces, Vadim Bobilevich, in an interview with STV channel, APA reports citing local media.

"Yes, indeed, our brigade is currently carrying out tasks to strengthen one of the sections of the state border — in the southern direction. We are equipped with all the necessary weapons and equipment. The servicemen are professionally trained, and their combat spirit is strong. We are ready to fulfill any task", - said Bobilevich.

Belarus shares its southern border only with Ukraine, its western border with Poland and Lithuania, its northern border with Latvia, and its eastern border with Russia. Earlier in the day, the Polish Air Navigation Services Agency «at the request of the military» issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM) about «unplanned military actions related to ensuring the security of the state». It will be in effect from February 5th to May 5th. The map shows the area of the warning’s effect — the territories bordering Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine.

Also, since February 1st, the North Atlantic Alliance has begun the main phase of the Steadfast Defender 2024 military exercises, taking place in Europe. These are the largest NATO military exercises since 1988. The preparatory part of the exercises began on January 22nd, and the maneuvers themselves will last until May 31st, 2024. More than 90,000 representatives from all branches of the armed forces from 31 NATO countries, as well as Sweden, which has not yet joined the bloc, will participate in Steadfast Defender 2024. The exercises will involve over 50 ships, from aircraft carriers to destroyers, more than 80 fighter jets, helicopters, and drones, and about 1,100 combat vehicles, including 133 tanks and 533 infantry fighting vehicles.

Belarus previously stated that NATO did not inform Minsk about the military exercises and thus violated the provisions of the 2011 Vienna Document on Confidence- and Security-Building Measures. Following the start of the military operation in Ukraine, Belarusian military personnel have been put on high alert, and additional measures have been taken to strengthen the country’s borders. The situation in the region remains tense, with both Belarus and NATO conducting military activities in close proximity to each other.

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THE OPERATION IS BEING PERFORMED