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New plans to defend Belarus, develop army authorized

MINSK (BelTA) – The Security Council adopted a new plan of Belarus' defense and a concept for building and developing the Armed Forces for the period till 2030 at the session held in the Palace of Independence on 19 December. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko signed the package of documents, BelTA has learned.

The national defense plan includes several documents. For a year the General Staff of the Armed Forces had analyzed them and representatives of law enforcement and security agencies had discussed them during conferences. The main documents in the package are the decision of the commander-in-chief on Belarus' defense (a graphic part and a text part) and the directive on defending the country.

Aleksandr Lukashenko stressed during the Security Council session that Belarus remains committed to pursuing a policy of peace and remains a donor of security in the region. The head of state described the development of the country's own security system and continued military cooperation with friendly countries as undisputed priorities. “The Belarusian army has never threatened anyone, does not threaten and is not going to threaten. The army is a tool to prevent wars. If an aggression happens, the army should be capable not only of repulsing the aggression but also of delivering unacceptable damage to the enemy. The main purpose of the Armed Forces is to defend sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of the country,” the president stated.

State Secretary of the Security Council of Belarus Stanislav Zas, Defense Minister Andrei Ravkov, and Acting Chief of the General Staff, First Deputy Defense Minister Aleksandr Volfovich talked to reporters after the session to explain peculiarities of the adopted documents and plans to develop the Belarusian army.

Stanislav Zas noted: “The defense plan focuses on preventing an outbreak of hostilities, on strategic deterrence. The new plan pays more attention to the matter than the previous one. Documents on strategic deterrence have been worked out. More attention is also paid to matters of destabilization of the situation in the country since those are also matters of defense. It is today's reality all over the world: everything begins with the destabilization of the domestic situation, with attempts to provoke a domestic armed conflict.”

A lot of attention was paid during the session to satisfying the needs of the country's defense. The state secretary noted: “Everything has been calculated. We are capable of ensuring the military security of our country bearing in mind the resources we have. We are going to gradually increase defense spending. It indeed has to be done if we are to properly build up the potential of the Armed Forces.” There are plans to increase defense spending up to 1.5% of the GDP over the course of ten years.

The Security Council also discussed the concept for building and developing the Armed Forces for the period till 2030. The document describes the composition and the structure of the army, the tasks the army has to accomplish in times of peace and war. According to Stanislav Zas, the concept focuses on preserving the existing composition and the structure of the Armed Forces, their quality development by means of better combat training, rearmament, and modernization of the technological component.