ISW: Belarus blames Ukraine, NATO for growing number of provocations on Belarus-Ukraine border

    WORLD  02 December 2022 - 10:30

    According to the US-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW), Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko continued to set informational conditions to resist Russian pressure to enter the war against Ukraine by claiming that NATO is preparing to attack Belarus.

    ISW wrote in its latest report on December 1 that Lukashenko blamed Ukraine and NATO for a growing number of provocations near the Belarus-Ukrainian border and stated that Ukraine is trying to drag NATO forces into the war. Lukashenko stated that Belarusian officials managed to deter a potential adversary from using military force against Belarus and that NATO is building up forces and intensifying combat training in neighbouring countries. The Belarusian Minister of Defense Viktor Khrenin stated that there is no direct preparation for war and that Belarus will only defend its territory.

    "Ukrainian Main Military Intelligence Directorate (GUR) representative Vadym Skibitsky reported that there are no signs of the formation of a strike group on Belarusian territory. Lukashenko and Khrenin likely made the comments to bolster what ISW has previously assessed as an ongoing information operation aimed at fixing Ukrainian forces on the border with Belarus in response to the threat of Belarus entering the war," ISW wrote.

    According to the report, Lukashenko and Khrenin also likely focused the information operation on supposed NATO aggression and provocative activities along the Belarusian border to suggest that the Belarusian military needs to remain in Belarus to defend against potential NATO aggression, and thus set informational conditions for resisting Russian pressure to enter the war in Ukraine.

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