NATO dismissed on Sunday allegations by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko that it was conducting a military buildup near the country's western border but said it was closely monitoring the situation following his contested re-election.
Earlier on Sunday Lukashenko said tanks and planes of the 30-nation military alliance had been deployed 15 minutes from the Belarusian border, Reuters reported.
"There is no NATO buildup in the region," NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu said in a statement.
"NATO's multinational presence in the eastern part of the Alliance is not a threat to any country. It is strictly defensive, proportionate, and designed to prevent conflict and preserve peace."
She said NATO was closely monitoring events in Belarus, which has been gripped by protests since an Aug. 9 election that Lukashenko's opponents say was rigged, and called for basic freedoms to be respected, including the right to peaceful protest.