Lukashenko: Worsening situation at CSTO western borders is alarming

11:31, 16 September

The worsening situation at the western borders of the CSTO is a dangerous trend, Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko said at the session of the CSTO Collective Security Council in Dushanbe on 16 September, BelTA has learned.

“The worsening situation at the western borders of the CSTO is a dangerous trend. The USA is increasing its military presence in Eastern Europe, the NATO coalition is set to intensify its military build-up,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

This year, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization conducted a series of drills in the Baltics and Ukraine. Over the last five years alone, their number more than doubled to reach 90 large-scale exercises a year, while the number of troops involved rose from 60,000 to 110,000 military.

“All this creates conditions for military provocations and incidents at our borders. At the same time, our neighbors - the Baltic Sea countries, Poland and Ukraine - respond very nervously to the Belarus-Russia routine military exercise Zapad 2021. This drill has nearly drawn to a close, while these countries keep lamenting about it throughout the world, although this exercise is purely defensive in nature,” the president stressed.

He noted that the exercise was widely covered in the media, international observers are always invited to attend. “However, our neighbors keep talking about imaginary threats to their security. The Ukrainian president even assumed that the Belarus-Russia exercise will practice the capture of Kyiv, Odessa, Kharkiv. At the same time, Ukraine itself constantly participates in NATO maneuvers that clearly have a non-defensive nature. We conduct our exercises on our territory, while the Americans made it all the way to Ukraine located a thousand kilometers away to conduct an ostensibly defensive exercise. Who are they defending themselves against there?” the president asked.

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