Under the guise of holding joint military exercises, the Russian armed forces will soon deploy a Russian grouping of troops in Belarus, which can be used for aggressive actions against Ukraine. In addition, Russia is building up its aviation grouping in Belarus.
According to an Ukrinform correspondent, Brigadier General Oleksii Hromov, Deputy Chief of the Main Operational Department of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, said this at a briefing on Thursday, January 12.
"It is worth noting that a joint operational exercise of the Russian and Belarusian armed forces - Union Shield 2023 - is to be held in Belarus. At the same time, instead of Exercise Center 2023, it is planned to hold the West 2023 maneuvers of the armed forces of Russia and Belarus. The peculiarity of these activities is that in both cases, a Russian grouping of troops will be deployed in Belarus, which can be used for respective actions. Based on the above, the potential threat of an offensive by the Russian armed forces from Belarus will remain in place throughout the year," Hromov said.
He noted that at this moment, no measures have been observed that the enemy is forming a strike grouping to resume offensive operations from Belarus.
Currently, the enemy has intensified railway transportation along the state border of Ukraine and is moving their units to Belarus to restore their combat capability. In addition, units of the armed forces of the occupying country, which have been conducting combat coordination on Belarusian training grounds since October 2022, are being moved from Belarus.
Hromov said that Belarus had extended the ban on flights of civilian aircraft over its territory until April 1, and Russia is building up its aviation grouping in Belarus.
"In Belarus, restrictions on flights of all types of civilian aircraft, including UAVs, in the south of the country, including in the Brest and Gomel regions bordering Ukraine, have been been extended until April 1. At the same time, the Ministry of Defense of Belarus announced the holding of joint flight and tactical exercises of the air component from both states in the period from January 16 to February 1 of this year. Under the guise of conducting the specified exercises, the enemy is building up an aviation grouping in Belarus. Last week, at least ten Mi-8 and Mi-24 helicopters were moved to the Machulishchy airfield. It is also expected that operational and tactical aircraft will be relocated to the Belarusian airfield. Flights of long-range aircraft of the aggressor country in the Belarusian airspace are not excluded," Hromov said, adding that given the above, the threat of airstrikes and the use of kamikaze drones against Ukraine from the Belarusian airspace is increasing.