Belarus launches military drills on border with Ukraine, tests troop readiness

Source: www.foxnews.com : 2022-07-12 15:05:45 : Caitlin McFall

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

Belarus on Tuesday announced it launched military drills along its shared border with Ukraine in an effort to assess the readiness of its territorial troops, Belarusian defense officials said. 

The drills are slated to last from July 12-14 and will assess troop preparedness for combat tasks and test the command abilities of reserve officers, the Belarusian Defense Ministry said in a Telegram post.

The drills will be held in the Gomel region, which shares a border with Ukraine in an area directly north of Kyiv.

Separate communication drills are being held from July 11-15 and will be led by the Chief of Communications of the Armed Forces.

The Belarusian Ministry of Defense said the training will not only assess the readiness of military units in the area, but will “work out the issues of building up and functioning the communications system.”

A photograph taken on February 17, 2022 shows Belarus' armored personnel carrier (APC) during joint exercises of the armed forces of Russia and Belarus as part of an inspection of the Union State's Response Force, at a firing range near a town of Osipovichi outside Minsk. 

A photograph taken on February 17, 2022 shows Belarus’ armored personnel carrier (APC) during joint exercises of the armed forces of Russia and Belarus as part of an inspection of the Union State’s Response Force, at a firing range near a town of Osipovichi outside Minsk. 
(Photo by MAXIM GUCHEK/BELTA/AFP via Getty Images)

UKRAINIANS BRACE FOR BELARUS-LED LAND INVASION BY JULY, ESCALATING PUTIN’S WAR

“Tactical and special training with the communications forces” will be overseen by Chief of the Communications Department of the General Staff of the Armed Forces, Major General Oleg Myshchenko.

The servicemen will also be trained on new forms of communication networks for field support during combat.

The drills were previously planned according to the Belarusian Defense Ministry, though it was unclear when they were planned. 

The announcement on the latest round of military drills near Ukraine’s northern border comes just one month after Minsk said its forces had begun combat readiness training and weeks after Russia was allowed to fire missiles at Ukrainian targets from within Belarus’ borders. 

In early June Ukrainian President Volodymy Zelenskyy said the threat of a ground invasion by Belarus in support of Russia was minimal but noted that Ukraine was “preparing for all the risks of an invasion.”

By late June Zelenskyy had accused Moscow of attempting to drag Minsk into the war after the Ukrainian Defense Ministry said “a mass rocket-bomb strike was launched” after 12 cruise missiles were fired from Russian planes flying over Belarusian airspace.

Western defense officials have long assessed that Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko – the only European leader to back Moscow – is balancing the threat of entering a war and his unwavering support for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko pose for a photo during their meeting in Moscow, Russia, Friday, March 11, 2022. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko pose for a photo during their meeting in Moscow, Russia, Friday, March 11, 2022. 
(Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP))

UKRAINE ACCUSES RUSSIA OF BRINGING BELARUS INTO WAR AFTER MISSILE LAUNCHES FROM NORTHERN NEIGHBOR

Lukashenko – who faced mass protests following the 2020 re-election that many believed was rigged – could face backlash at home, international sanctions and resistance in the Belarusian armed forces if he enters Putin’s war. 

It is unclear how well Ukraine would be able to fend off a second offensive in the north as its eastern and southern regions continued to be pummeled by Russian forces. 

Ukrainian officials have suggested they have a plan to counter Russia’s forces in its southern regions by launching “a million-strong” resistance force equipped with modern western weaponry. 

Russian and Belarusian armed forces take part in a military drill in Gomel, Belarus on Feb. 19.

Russian and Belarusian armed forces take part in a military drill in Gomel, Belarus on Feb. 19.
(Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“We have approximately 700,000 in the armed forces and when you add the national guard, police, border guard, we are around a million-strong.” Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov told The Times Sunday. 

Ukraine has urged civilians in its southern regions to evacuate as soon as they can ahead of the counter-attack. 

Read the original article on Here!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *