Russia has formed a reserve force of law enforcement officers “to help” Belarus if necessary, Russian president Vladimir Putin said in an interview with the federal channel “Russia”.
The Russian head of state stressed that Russian forces will not be used “until the extremist elements in Belarus, under the guise of political slogans, cross the border, start to simply rob people, start burning cars, houses, banks, try to seize administrative buildings and so on”.
Vladimir Putin noted that the reserve force was formed at the request of Alyaksandr Lukashenka. The Russian leader added that he and his Belarusian counterpart had come to the conclusion that there was no need to use this force yet. “And I hope there will not be any,” he added.
In mid-August, Lukashenka said that Putin had promised to provide Belarus with comprehensive assistance within the framework of the obligations under the Union State and the CSTO.
Commenting on the events in Belarus, Putin said that this is first of all a matter of the Belarusian people. But at the same time he stressed that for Russia, Belarus may be the closest country, and it is impossible to be indifferent to what is happening. But Russia, according to Putin, behaves “much more restrained and neutral” than other countries.
At the same time, the Russian leader described the actions of the Belarusian security services as “restrained”, citing events in the West, where people are “shot in the back”.
Vladimir Putin called the incident with the detention of alleged PMC Wagner fighters near Minsk a special operation of the Ukrainian and American special services.
“They were simply dragged into Belorussia and presented as a possible strike force to stir things up during the election campaign. Which was absolutely untrue. People were going to work in a third country,” Putin told presenter Sergei Brilyov.