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Updated December 26th, 2023 at 10:56 IST

Russia completes deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus, says President Lukashenko

Amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko confirmed that Russia has completed the shipments of tactical nuclear weapons

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko | Image:AP
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St. Petersburg: Amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko confirmed that Russia has completed the shipments of tactical nuclear weapons, a deal Russian President Vladimir Putin signed with Lukashenko, earlier this year. While speaking at the meeting of a Moscow-led economic bloc in St. Petersburg, the Belarusian leader confirmed that the shipments were completed in October, Belta reported. However, he did not give details of exactly how many tactical weapons were sent or where they have been deployed.     

"It was delivered a long time ago. I talked about it, when the delivery was completed. Back in September, I think, or in October. The last delivery was at the beginning of October. Everything is in good condition," the Belarusian leader said on Monday. When asked when will both Russia and Belarus conduct their next joint military exercise, the Belarusian leader gave a positive response.  “We are learning something new every day. Even the former Wagner fighters who have stayed with us are now working in our units, passing on their experience,” Lukashenko added. 

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A tool to deter Poland 

In the past, the Belarusian leader said that the deployment of tactical weapons would help the Eastern European nation to use it as a deterrence to Poland's aggression. It is important to note that tactical nuclear weapons are usually intended to be used on the battlefield. The weapons in question have a short range and a low yield compared to much more powerful nuclear warheads fitted to long-range missiles. From the get-go of the deal, Russia has maintained that it will still have control over the weapon system it sent to the Eastern European nation. Meanwhile, Belarus has been concerned over Poland's involvement in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war. Poland which is a NATO member is offering neighbouring Ukraine with humanitarian and political backing in its struggle against Russia’s invasion. The country has also taken part in international sanctions on Russia and Belarus. During the initial days of the war, Russian troops used Belarusian bases to invade Ukraine from the north, however, the Belarusian forces did not participate in the conflict.   

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Published December 26th, 2023 at 10:56 IST

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