Russian soldiers re-deployed to Belarus in October 2022 will soon start holding tactical military exercises there, Russian news agency Interfax reported, based on information from the Russian Ministry of Defence.
It is not yet clear when and where in the country the exercises will take place. According to authorities, nine thousand Russian troops were reportedly moved to Belarus in October. Russian President Vladimir Putin is travelling to Minsk on Monday (19 December) to meet his counterpart Belarusian President Vladimir Lukashenko.
Russia is an essential ally for Lukashenko. Earlier this year, the Russian army attacked Ukraine from Belarus, which was followed by international sanctions against the country.
The upcoming military exercises between Russia and Belarus will reportedly involve ground forces, air forces, and anti-aircraft defense units. The exercises are expected to be used to practice the deployment of troops in Belarus and the coordination of their combat activities with those of the Belarusian army. The exercise will also serve as a showcase of Russia's military capabilities in the region.