Kremlin says it doesn’t expect to deploy Russian ‘reserve police’ to quell Belarusian ‘extremists’
A day after Vladimir Putin announced that Russia has created a police reserve to reinforce Belarusian law enforcement “if necessary,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov assured journalists that Moscow very much considers such assistance to be unlikely.
“It’s vital to understand and the president emphasized it: this is a reserve unit and there is, in fact, no need to activate it or use it in any way,” Peskov said. “President Putin proceeds from the assumption that it won’t be used in any way. And we are proceeding from the belief that Belarus won’t face the extreme situation the president described.”
Asked if Moscow is considering assistance to Belarusian civil society and not just the country’s police force, Peskov declined to “speculate” on such aid and instead praised law enforcement in Belarus for their “extremely cautious and delicate” work with protesters.
On August 27, in an interview with Russian state television, Vladimir Putin announced that the Kremlin has formed a reserve of police officers to be sent to Belarus in the event of widespread extremism and looting.