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Russia-Belarus military cooperation to ensure the security of airspace - Foreign Ministry

March 14, 2014, 19:24 UTC+3 MINSK
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MINSK, March 14, /ITAR-TASS/. Belarus’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday that military cooperation between Russia and Belarus was not directed against third countries.

“Russia and Belarus are strengthening the alert forces of the United Regional Anti-Aircraft System in response to NATO’s decision to strengthen its air grouping near the Belarusian border,” the Belarusian Foreign Ministry said in its statement.

It followed a report by Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry that called the training of Russian military units in the Belarusian territory as an attempt to involve other friendly states in Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

“We believe that we should take measures designed to ensure the security of our airspace, and we are taking them responsibly and openly. This is our internal affair and a sovereign right,” Dmitry Mironchik, the Belarusian Foreign Ministry’s spokesperson, emphasised.

The Belarusian Foreign Ministry was surprised that the Ukrainian colleagues had based their report on some kind of “operational data”. Belarus assumes that the Foreign Ministries of neighboring countries has a number of means and channels to share information with each other and there is no need to resort to any “operational data”. The more so that the Belarusian side has always given clear and maximum transparent explanations of the causes and logic behind its actions which may affect the interests of foreign partners, especially the closest neighbors, Mironchik went on to say.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry hopes that the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry will refrain from similar statements in future in order not to rupture and spoil the traditionally friendly relations between Belarus and Ukraine.

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