Reservists mobilised across Belarus: Threat from Russia or NATO? (ENG video)

Amid the Russo-Ukrainian war reservists are being called up en masse for training in Belarus without any previous warning, independent media report. According to the Belarusian Defense Ministry, tactical exercises are in progress.

Watch Belsat TV news story (ENG subs):

‘My acquaintance was fooled into a training. He got a summons to attend a lecture at a military agency, but they took him to a military unit!’ Members of the reserve and their families earlier informed Charter97 news site of military agencies’ calling up a lot of reservists and other persons subject to military service in Vaukavysk, Hrodna and Brest.

‘A conscription centre has been opened at Brest State University. Besides, all guys who have any exemptions are also called up. They pay special attention to those studying abroad,’ the news portal reports.

According to the Defense Ministry, military trainings as part of extensive wargame are really being conducted. But only 350 reservists have joined 7,000 conscripts, the Ministry states.

ALEH BELAKONEU, Deputy Defense Minister:

‘A number of practical tasks is being fulfilled, with [elements of] complete mobilisation and war establishment. Rapid-reaction forces units are training operational readiness.’

Thus, the Ministry says this is a usual scheduled activity.

ANDREY PAROTNIKAU, Belarusian Security Blog editor-in-chief:

‘Military units are being organised on a war footing at the expense of reservists. What is more, the plan on the state defense has been recently adopted. ’

This plan hints that the concept of lighting agaist the so-called green men has appeared in Belarus. Next Sunday a law is to come in force: it states that any country’s sending armed gangs or regular units to Belarus is considered as an attack. This has lately happened to Donbas. And perhaps  it is not just a coincidence that Belarusians will be war-gaming action against sabotage and reconaissance groups of unknown origin.

ANDREY PAROTNIKAU, Belarusian Security Blog editor-in-chief:

‘From my perspective, the General Staff should take into account each possible option. Our country is continental; that’s why there might be a war confrontation with any neighbouring country, and we should be ready for it at east at the level of doctrines.’

With the help of these exercises Belarus is also demonstrating power to potential enemies and sworn … allies.

ANDREY KAZAKEVICH, political analyst:

‘There are two goals: firstly, Belarus is eager to prove it has a strong army easy to mobilise; secondly, it wants to reduce possibile risks, cut the likelihood of being attacked.’

And which of our neighbours is threatening most?


‘There is no threat!’

‘Maybe NATO’

‘I believe there is a threat from the East, from Russia’

Earlier it was the national and democratic forces of  Belarus who warned against the military aggression from the East. After Russia’s annexation of Crimea the country’s General Staff also seems to become particularly anxious about a potential threat.

At the same time, in late January command officers of Russia’s Western Military District (WMD) were learning special aspects of troop command and control in the context of netcentric and hybrid warfare. For the first time officers of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Belarus took part in the operative and mobilisation meeting of managing staff of the WMD, Belsat TV reported earlier.

Yaraslau Stseshyk/MS

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