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Russia, Belarus to created Union State defense mechanism in 2016-18 — defense minister

October 21, 2015, 13:28 UTC+3

The plan of joint activities for 2016-2018 is aimed at formation of a military organization of the Union State

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Russian-Belarusian military drills

Russian-Belarusian military drills

© Ruslan Shamukov/TASS

MOSCOW, October 21. /TASS/. Russia and Belarus will create in the next two years a mechanism for the armed defense of the Union State, Russian Defense Minister, General Sergey Shoigu told reporters on Wednesday after a joint collegium meeting of the two countries’ defense ministries.

"We have approved [at the collegium meeting] the plan of joint activities for 2016-2018 that is aimed at formation of a military organization of the Union State, the establishment of a reliable mechanism for its armed defense," Shoigu said.

According to the minister, the collegium also discussed implementation of the agreement on joint guarding of the external borders and combat duty within the framework of the Unified Regional Air Defense System in Belarus

Shoigu separately addressed the issue of the improvement of the joint radio-electronic warfare system. "The necessary regulatory framework for this has been formed, and its functioning will ensure efficient use of the electronic warfare assets of our countries’ armed forces," the minister said.

According to Shoigu, Russia and Belarus should have a coordinated approach to the key global and regional security issues.

The two countries need not just a high level of cooperation between the defense departments, but a coordinated approach that will allow them to successfully strengthen the Union State’s defense capability.

"This approach is relevant right now, in a difficult military and political situation in the world when sources of instability have come very close to the borders of our countries. Ukraine is a graphic example," Shoigu said at a joint collegium meeting of the Russian and Belarusian defence ministries.

The Russian minister also noted that military security of Russia and Belarus depends on the developments in Ukraine, and it is important to implement the Minsk agreements.

"Military security of equally Russia and Belarus depends on how the situation evolves in this brotherly country. We see direct dialogue between Ukraine and representatives of the Donetsk and Lugansk republics as the only possible way of national reconciliation. It is important to ensure implementation of the Minsk agreements," Shoigu said at the meeting.

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