Analysts explain why Putin needs nuclear weapons in Belarus
Russia already has the ability to launch a nuclear strike anywhere, so there was no military point in redeploying missiles.
The Kremlin is deploying its nuclear weapons in Belarus in order to increase its control over the Belarusian army. This is stated in the new summary of the American Institute for the Study of War (ISW).
Yesterday it became known that Russia and Belarus signed an agreement on the deployment of Russian nuclear weapons on Belarusian territory. However, analysts doubt that the weapon itself will actually end up in Belarus.
They state that Russia already has the ability to deliver a nuclear strike on any part of the planet, even without deploying the weapon itself in Belarus. In addition, in practice, the scenario with the use of nuclear weapons in ISW is considered extremely unlikely.
At the same time, analysts drew attention to the words of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who stressed that Russia would retain control over tactical nuclear weapons if they were deployed in Belarus. Shoigu also promised to send additional Russian troops to Belarus to develop military infrastructure, expand joint combat training and conduct intelligence activities near the borders of the “Union State”.
“The deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus requires both significant military infrastructure and Russian command and control over units of the Belarusian armed forces. The Kremlin likely intends to use these requirements to further subjugate the Belarusian security sphere to Russia,” the ISW believes.
Russia sends nuclear weapons to Belarus
At the end of March of this year, Vladimir Putin said that Belarus had already begun construction of a special storage facility for tactical nuclear weapons. The project is scheduled to be completed by July 1st.
On May 25, the defense ministers of Russia and Belarus signed documents on the procedure for keeping non-strategic nuclear weapons on Belarusian territory. At the same time, Alexander Lukashenko said that nuclear weapons had allegedly already begun to be transferred from Russia to Belarus.