Meeting on security

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Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko hosted a meeting on security on 10 October. The plans to hold this meeting were announced at the meeting of the head of state with the military at the Strategic Management Center of the Defense Ministry of Belarus.

“When we were in the Strategic Control Center of the Defense Ministry, you and I agreed that we would get together and once again discuss your proposals concerning the sphere of our security. We have to determine what else needs to be done in order to bolster the security of our country taking into account the rapidly changing situation,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said at the beginning of the meeting.

The President stated that the situation around Belarus remains tense. “Even more so, an opinion that the Belarusian army will be directly involved in the special military operation in Ukraine’s territory is being cultivated in the West,” the head of state remarked. “Influenced by these leaks, the military political leadership of the North Atlantic Alliance and a number of European countries are already openly considering options for a possible aggression against our country, including a nuclear strike.”

According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, it is not news for Belarus. The Belarusian leader has been warning about that for a long time. “Today their goal is not to get us to fight on Russia’s side in Ukraine or, god forbid, carry out a nuclear strike and the rest. It is not the key target. The key target (it has remained the same since days of old) is to get us involved in the war while dealing with Russia and Belarus at the same time,” the head of state said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said that the Belarusian side was warned through unofficial channels about strikes on Belarus from the territory of Ukraine. “They said that it would be the Crimean Bridge 2. This information was immediately brought to my attention. My answer was simple: Tell the President of Ukraine and other insane people, if they are still there, that the Crimean Bridge will be just the thin end of the wedge to them, if only they touch a single meter of our territory with their dirty hands,” the Belarusian leader emphasized.

“This is your responsibility, consider this an order for you,” the head of state said addressing the military and security forces.

“Today Ukraine is not just contemplating, but planning strikes on the territory of Belarus. Of course, the Ukrainians absolutely do not need this. Well, why would they need to open a second front on our southern border which is their northern border? This is madness from the point of view of the military. Nevertheless, the process has begun. They are being pushed by their patrons to unleash a war against Belarus in order to draw us in it and deal with Russia and Belarus at a time,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

Both countries have been aware of it for a long time. Moreover, the Belarusian head of state has repeatedly warned his fellow citizens and the world community about these plans. “We saw it, we knew it, we created battalion tactical groups, we practiced the defense of the southern border, which we are doing now. Our Armed Forces are on duty there on a permanent basis,” the President noted.

He stressed that the recent events related to the Crimean Bridge suggest a significant increase in the level of terrorist threat. “I repeat once again: they are dizzy with success. They are ready to fight with everyone now,” Aleksandr Lukashenko added.

The President pointed out that Poland is “simply shivering” while asking Americans to immediately bring and deploy nuclear weapons in Poland. Including from nuclear arsenals in Germany.

“We have recently stated that Poles have used armed forces to defend the border with Belarus. Then they withdrew the armed forces. Some of them. But they showed to us that they were leaving. Nothing of the kind. They withdrew them by hundreds of kilometers from the border and are now equipping them with weapons according to NATO standards. They have disposed of all the Soviet and Polish weapons by donating them to Ukraine. And they are now refitting the armed forces with cutting-edge weapons. Is it difficult for them to get close to the Belarusian border? It would take them half a night. We can see it. This is why it should not calm us down. If need be, they will be able to redeploy their troops back to the border within 2-3 hours,” the head of state pointed out.

In the current conditions the United States of America and European Union countries say they are going to legalize the Belarusian self-exiled opposition. “As a political force. They want to substantially increase support for destructive elements, deteriorate the situation at the western border right up to organizing the second front,” the President remarked.

Aleksandr Lukashenko reminded those present about what he said at the beginning of Russia’s special operation in Ukraine. Back then he said Belarus would not allow anyone to shoot Russians in the back. The situation along the western border was referred to. “It was a figure of speech. But back then I saw that the western direction was the most dangerous one. If we had uncovered it, we would be standing on the brink of a war today. But we left army units over there. Moreover, we’ve reinforced the western flank,” he said.

The Belarus President described all the ongoing events as a logical continuation of the pressure on Belarus. Everything began with an attempt to organize a color revolution and a blitzkrieg in 2020. When those failed, they launched the second stage – economic choking and information pressure. However, it has failed to produce the desired results. “What is left then? Using force to resolve the problem. They want to destabilize the situation in the country through acts of sabotage, provocations. It is what they plan. If things work out, they intend to start combat operations afterwards. It is a very topical idea in the current situation,” the Belarusian leader noted.

This is why the training of militants recruited from ranks of Belarusian radicals has begun in Poland, Lithuania, and Ukraine. They are supposed to carry out acts of sabotage, terrorist attacks, and organize a military mutiny in Belarus. It is becoming an immediate threat.

“Taking into account the desire of the Polish government to rattle even nuclear weapons, it is not simply a threat anymore. It is a danger for the defensive ability of our country,” the head of state stressed.

Aleksandr Lukashenko said that several days ago the KGB was instructed to take the necessary counterterrorism measures. “Today we are going to hear how this instruction is being fulfilled. Taking into account all these factors, the overall emerging situation we need counteraction options. Including military ones. In order to detect and localize threats in a timely manner. In order to adequately respond to any military manifestations against Belarus if need be,” the Belarusian leader stressed.

“Without whipping up tensions, I would like you to understand: if you want peace, you have to prepare for war. Always. All your life. In order to prevent all sorts of clashes and manifestations, we, the military, must have plans to counter all sorts of scoundrels who are trying to drag us into a fight. We must not let them drag us into a war. This is our main task. There should be no war on the territory of Belarus. We, the military, must take all measures to prevent it,” the head of state said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko recalled that he had a one-on-one meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin after the informal CIS summit in St. Petersburg. "Given the worsening of the situation on the western borders of the Union State, we agreed to deploy a regional group of forces of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus. This complies with our documents. It says that if the threat level reaches the level as it is now, we begin to use the Union State group of forces. The basis (I have always said this) of this group is the army, the Armed Forces of the Republic of Belarus. I must inform you that the formation of this group has begun. It's been going on for, I think, two days. I gave an order to start forming this group," the Belarusian leader said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko also noted that Russia cannot deal with another conflict now. "Last thing they need is another conflict. You know they have enough problems. Therefore, we should not expect a large number of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. But it will be more than one thousand people," he said.

"Please get ready to host these people soon and accommodate them where necessary, according to our plan. Without going over the top, keeping things calm," Aleksandr Lukashenko instructed the defense minister.

He also gave advice to all the Belarusians on what to do in the current situation: “People have already sensed that something is not okay, that there are some tensions, and so on. I would like to repeat that everyone should continue working on their places.”

“The current situation is not so aggravated that we need to start acting immediately. We have our military that will demonstrate at this point their determination to defend their country. Then none of the scoundrels will get here,” the Belarusian leader said.

The Belarusian head of state recalled that following the recent meeting at the Strategic Management Center, he ordered to update the general public, the military, journalists, civil servants on ongoing developments around Belarus. “Otherwise, it will be like in 2020: we know everything, we seem to understand it, but the people do not know this. We need to put people in the picture. I know that several information events have already taken place,” he said.

“Today, the state secretary [of the Security Council] and I have agreed that we will conduct a large-scale nationwide information campaign, with a focus on large enterprises. This campaign will be administrated at the highest level,” the Belarusian leader added.

The President instructed the Defense Ministry and the State Security Committee to work out a possible set of measures meant to control the situation and respond to it. “But I am warning you one more time: we will give a decent response to any enemy. We’ve been preparing for it for decades. We will give a response if need be. God forbid, of course,” the head of state said.

He drew attention to the role of intelligence agencies, designated military personnel and civilians, who must not overlook anything with regard to the developing situation. “We have to know everything going on along our borders,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed.

Aleksandr Lukashenko addressed the topic of the recent meeting on economic matters and explained why such events are held at the level of the head of state.

"The main goal of the meeting on prices and similar meetings is to remove the points of tension and discontent of people. We see from sociological surveys that rising prices and inflation in the country are already trending in second place [of people’s concerns],” the Belarusian leader said.

"The concept of justice is at the heart of our policy. We will continue to adhere to it,” the President said.

“I want you to understand. Some have started lamenting and moaning, especially those from abroad... The main thing is not the ban on price growth. It is not. Please read the directive. The main thing is to develop a pricing control system. Before this system is there (it's only a few days), prices should not rise indeed," the Belarusian leader said.

He noted that these days, MPs, trade unions, the State Control Committee and everyone, who has been tasked with this mission, have been monitoring the execution of the President's instruction to ban price increases. "A slight increase in prices has been registered only in a dozen of the thousands of inspected facilities. Criminal cases have been opened into all these cases," Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

As for imports, the government is set to keep the pricing process under strict control, the President said. “We will check why the price sometimes go up 5-10 times here. If it is justified, so be it. If not (we count well|) you will be held responsible,” the Belarusian leader said.

The head of state stressed that one of the important results of pricing control should be the personalization of responsibility for price growth. The ministers in charge of the production of goods and the governors in charge of the state of retail will be responsible for this.

"If we are afraid that this might lead to some kind of deficit, then governors and ministers will make an appropriate decision. But they will be keeping tabs on the situation," the Belarusian leader said. According to him, now almost no one is responsible for this. "His majesty the market rules," the President said ironically. “But we already know what the market is about. We were constantly pushed into the abyss of market relations, that is, into a mess and confusion.”

Market economy proponents, when it is profitable for them or when they want to deal with the pressure of public opinion, are ready not even to regulate but to dictate prices even for other countries’ goods, Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked. One of the latest examples is the desire of the West to set prices for oil and gas from Russia. "I am afraid that Saudi Arabia might soon join the list. The United States has already blamed them for the rise in prices [for fuel]," the head of state said.

He stressed that he had long been aware of such "specifics" of the market economy, but in Belarus many specialists have supported market pricing.

"Once again, I emphasize, price growth is a source of people's discontent. These sources should not exist," Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

“I would like to reiterate that there should be no mediators in the export of Belarusian products. We need only direct sales. Thus, we will save a lot,” the President said. In this regard, he mentioned MTZ, MAZ, BelAZ and other companies that use mediators to export their products.

“We have seen where these dealers lead to. This is why I advise all heads of enterprises (large, small, medium-sized, private and state-owned) to stop using the services of dealers. You should market your products yourselves. Well, if you still decide to use the services of some private companies to sell your products, then the minister should approve this decision,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.