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Lukashenko says expedient to conduct joint watch duty with Russian jets

According to Lukashenko, Putin does not have any objections

MINSK, March 2. /TASS/. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has proposed conducting joint watch duty with participation of Russian planes over the national territory, using the experience of 2014 when the country hosted the world ice hockey championship when the jets arrived from Russia to Belarus to hold joint patrolling with pilots from both nations.

"Give us these planes. But Russians and Belarusians should fly these planes together just like back then. There are enough bases, there should not be any built, why waste money. It is better to buy or construct new planes for that," he was quoted as saying at a meeting focusing on the Belarusian-Russian military cooperation. According to Lukashenko, his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin did not have any objections. "Of course, if they can be stationed at our bases and our guys will fly together with Russians, we naturally will need to ask for weapons for these planes," the Belarusian leader added. "What’s more, these should be the most advanced weapons. We are not talking about nuclear warheads, we mean conventional weapons."

Lukashenko informed that the two leaders particularly considered military cooperation at the recent meeting in Sochi, underlining that Minsk and Moscow intend to continue acting in the framework of the joint group of forces. The Belarusian president believes the Russian army to be one of the strongest in the world and "Belarusian servicemen would benefit from adopting the most advanced methods of warfare and learning to use the newest weapons together with the Russian military." "The Russian president enthusiastically backed this," Lukashenko underlined.