Russian nuclear weapons expose Belarus to Western response, military expert says

27 October 2022, 10:25 PM
Belarus remains a springboard for Russian army attacks on Ukraine (Photo:Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Belarus / Facebook)

Belarus remains a springboard for Russian army attacks on Ukraine (Photo:Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Belarus / Facebook)

If Russia transfers nuclear weapons to Belarus as a part of their joint grouping of forces, it will complicate things for the West, as Belarus may become a target for a potential retaliatory strike, director of military programs at the Razumkov Center, Mykola Sunhurovskyi, said in an interview with NV, on Oct. 27.

Sunhurovskyi noted that the organizational structure for a joint Russia-Belarus force is already in place, preparing a bridgehead for incorporating the main group of arriving Russian troops. Their goal could be an attack on Ukraine’s Rivne and Volyn oblasts, in order to cut off Western supply routes to Ukraine.

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In addition, self-proclaimed president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, said that he wouldn’t mind receiving nuclear weapons from Russia.

“I think that Russia will take advantage of this,” Sunhurovsky said.

“The fact is that Lukashenko has no authority in the eyes of this so-called Joint Group of Forces. They will have their own commander, and within this group, Russia has the ability to transfer nuclear weapons – or pretend that it has transferred it, or just announce that it did.”

He noted that there already were reports of the possibility of equipping Belarusian Su-25 fighter jets with nuclear-capable missiles.

“And this complicates the decision-making process in the West,” the expert said.

“Which country should be struck in response (to the use of tactical nuclear weapons)? Most likely, Moscow will try to set Belarus up, making sure that a potential retaliatory nuclear strike will hit it, instead of Russia.”

The United States stated that in the event of Russia using nuclear weapons against Ukraine, the West will respond decisively. At the same time, U.S. President Joe Biden said he doesn’t believe Russian dictator Vladimir Putin will use tactical nuclear weapons.

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