Russia has handed over the first nuclear warheads to Belarus days ago, but the Belarusian military is ill-equipped to handle them properly, Ukrainian Defense Intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov said in an interview with Ukrainian TV channel 1+1 on Aug. 31.
In the interview, Budanov said that deploying nuclear weapons to Belarus is part of "a big geopolitical game", as well as a means of deterrence and upping the stakes.
"By the way, regarding nuclear weapons in Belarus, just a few days ago, the first warheads were delivered," the intelligence officer said.
Budanov added that before the transfer of nuclear weapons to Belarus, large-scale training exercises were conducted, using a number of nuclear warfare simulations.
"I read the original documents based on the results of these training exercises; the documents are quite unfavorable to Belarus," he said.
He explained that the Russian 12th Department, which is responsible for handling nuclear charges, wrote that, based on the results of training with nuclear simulators on Iskander missile systems, Belarus was completely unprepared to operate nuclear weapons.
On June 9, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin said that Moscow will start deploying tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus after July 7-8.
On Aug. 22, Polish President Andrzej Duda reported that Russia is in the process of transferring short-range nuclear weapons to neighboring Belarus.
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