Russia delivered its nuclear weapons to Belarus: Lukashenko said that they are many times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko said that his country began to receive Russian tactical nuclear weapons. According to him, some warheads are three times more powerful than the atomic bombs dropped by the United States on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. to Reuters.
“We have rockets and bombs that we received from Russia,” Lukashenka said in an interview with the Russian state television channel Rossiya-1, which was posted on the Telegram channel of the Belarusian state news agency Belta.
“The bombs are three times more powerful than those that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki,” he said, standing on the road in a forest clearing next to which military equipment was parked, and some kind of military warehouse was visible in the background.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on June 9 that Russia, which will retain control over tactical nuclear weapons, will start deploying them in Belarus after special storage facilities for them are ready.
In March, the Russian leader announced that he had agreed to deploy tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus, pointing to the deployment of such weapons by the United States in a number of European countries over many decades.
The United States criticized Putin's decision but said it did not intend to change its position on strategic nuclear weapons and saw no sign that Russia was preparing to use nuclear weapons.
Nevertheless, the Russian move is closely watched by the United States and its allies, as well as China, which has repeatedly warned against the use of nuclear weapons in the war in Ukraine.
"We have always been a target"
Lukashenko, a close ally of Putin, said in an interview on Russian state television that aired late on June 13 that his country has numerous Soviet-era nuclear storage facilities and has rebuilt five or six of them.
He stressed that Russian arms control is not an obstacle to its rapid use, if he considers such a step necessary. Lukashenko said he and Putin could call each other "at any moment."
Earlier on June 13, he separately said that Russian tactical nuclear weapons would be physically deployed on Belarusian territory “in a few days” and that he had the means to deploy longer-range missiles if they were ever needed.
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Lukashenko, who allowed his country to be used by Russian forces attacking Ukraine in what Moscow calls its "special military operation," says the deployment of nuclear weapons will serve as a deterrent against would-be aggressors.
Belarus borders on three NATO member countries: Lithuania, Latvia and Poland.
The 68-year-old former head of the Soviet collective farm, who has ruled Belarus since 1994, said he did not just ask Putin for weapons, but "demanded" them.
“We have always been a target,” Lukashenka said. “The West wants to tear us apart from 2020. No one has yet fought against a nuclear country, a country with nuclear weapons.”
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Lukashenko has repeatedly accused the West of trying to overthrow him after massive protests erupted in 2020 against his rule following a presidential election that the opposition says he won by fraud. Lukashenka said that he won fairly.
He carried out widespread reprisals against his opponents.
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