Lukashenko under Kremlin pressure: Russia may prepare for construction of military base in Belarus – Opposition
A tender announced by the Russian Defense Ministry for military transportation in international rail traffic sees a boost in volumes of such transportation for 2017, which can be an evidence of certain military accords reached between Alexander Lukashenko and Vladimir Putin, according to the press service of the opposition’s Belarusian Christian Democracy Party.
"In 2015 and in 2016 they purchased the services for 125 and 50 railcars respectively in the direction of Belarus and back, but for 2017, the number of railcars in this direction has increased dramatically – up to 4,162," reads the statement.
According to co-chairman of the Belarusian Christian Democracy Vitaliy Rymasheuski, this may indicate "new military agreements which Putin forced Lukashenko to agree to".
Read alsoLukashenko complains about surge in arms smuggling due to Ukraine"Lukashenko's regime is totally dependent on Moscow financially, and it is obvious that the Kremlin in exchange for concessions on economic issues will require complete obedience in foreign policy. In fact, Belarus today is a satellite of Russia," he said.
According to him, in exchange for the support of his authority, Lukashenko will be forced to meet any conditions the Kremlin puts forward. In addition, there is still an issue of a Russian airbase in Belarus, especially to contribute to Russia’s continued aggressive foreign policy.
Read alsoNew Russian military base 100 km from Ukraine border "almost ready" - Euronews"Belarusian authorities are in every way trying to distance themselves from the conflict in Ukraine and from active participation on the Russian side in a new "Cold War", but its independence is limited. Lukashenko during the years of his reign put Belarus in total dependence on Russia in economic and political terms," said the co-chairman of the BCD.
Rymasheuski did not rule out the Kremlin’s new demands and more pressure in the future in military cooperation, including the deployment of Russian weapons and Russian troops in Belarus.
Read alsoBelarus opposition wins parliamentary seat for first time in 20 years: Reuters"The Kremlin is buying Belarus’s loyalty for cheap oil, while Lukashenko is selling off national sovereignty," he said.
Earlier, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko confirmed strong allied relations between Minsk and the Russian Federation. "Today the world is being shaken by strife, terrorism, and armed conflicts. Many times, while discussing these issues with the president of Russia, we shared views in their assessment. In general, there are no differences between the two states on today’s international agenda," he said.