Belarus is not going to curtail its military cooperation with Russia over certain disagreements in other fields, Belarusian president Alyaksandr Lukashenka said on Monday.
“In spite of the opinions of certain ‘experts’ no one is going to cut back the military cooperation with Russia because we have the disagreements in other areas. On the contrary, the army exercise is a demonstration of our consistency in the maintenance of security of the two brotherly nations,” he said.
“Oil, gas, food and other issues in our relations are solvable. These are the issues of Belarus and Russia. However, it is inadmissible to be careless about the security and defense of our common borders,” the Belarusian leader stressed.
In his words, the international situation is such that the armed forces do their best to improve skills and raise the level of training of the regional Belarus-Russia taskforce for the protection of the western borders of the Union State.
In his opinion, the forthcoming joint strategic army exercise West 2017 is the best way to test the readiness of soldiers of the two countries for interaction.
According to Lukashenka, many years ago Belarus and Russia agreed to hold such army exercises in one of the two countries by rotation, and now it is Belarus’ turn. Belarus and Russia have created a strong group of armed forces in the western direction, and the Belarusian army makes up the basis of this group, the president stated.
“In case of a conflict or, God forbid, a war the Belarusian Armed Forces will use a certain battle scenario and will be immediately enforced by the corresponding army units from the Russian Federation. We have always believed that you need to keep powder dry in peacetime,” Alyaksandr Lukashenka added.