MINSK, May 6 — Belarus will not participate in Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday in an interview with The Associated Press (AP).
Lukashenko said Belarus stands for peace and has repeatedly called for the end of the current Russia-Ukraine military conflict.
“We categorically do not accept any war. We have done and are doing everything now so that there isn’t a war,” Lukashenko told AP, adding that his country has advanced negotiations between Ukraine and Russia.
Washington’s policy, he said, is the reason that Ukraine is not interested in negotiations, despite hostilities taking place on its territory.
The president said the use of nuclear weapons in the crisis was “unacceptable because it’s right next to us — we are not across the ocean like the United States.”
“It is also unacceptable because it might knock our terrestrial ball flying off the orbit to who knows where,” he said. “Whether or not Russia is capable of that — is a question you need to ask the Russian leadership.”
According to the Belarusian president, he and Russian President Vladimir Putin have the best relations that can be between the heads of independent states.
Mentioning the sudden check of the Armed Forces of Belarus from Wednesday, Lukashenko said the combat readiness check in Belarus has been carried out in response to NATO exercises in the Baltic states and Poland on the border with Belarus.
The number of NATO troops deployed on the border with Belarus was about 3,000 a few years ago, but now it reached around 32,000, said Lukashenko. (Xinhua)