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Putin announces that Russia will deploy tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus

Source: Russia 24

Russian president Vladimir Putin said on air on state-run television network Russia 24 that Russia intends to deploy tactical nuclear weapons on the territory of Belarus.

Putin said that he has reached an agreement on the subject with President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko. According to Putin, deploying weapons on Belarus’ territory “will not violate” Russia’s obligations on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, because the Russian military does not plan to transfer the weapons for use by Belarus. Russia does intend, however, to place its own weapons on Belarusian territory and to train the Belarusian military to use them.

The Russian president added that Russia has already helped Belarus convert 10 military aircraft to carry tactical nuclear weapons and given Minsk an Iskander multiple rocket launcher system, which is also capable of launching such weapons. On April 3, Russia will begin “training crews” in Belarus and plans to complete a “special storage facility for tactical nuclear weapons” in the country by July 1.

Putin says the reason for these actions was the announcement by the U.K. Defense Ministry that it plans to supply Ukraine with depleted uranium munitions.

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