Lukashenka notes “unprecedented pressure” on Belarus in his speech on Fatherland Defenders’ Day

Belarus, which implements an independent policy, has been under unprecedented pressure, Alyaksandr Lukashenka said at a reception that he gave on February 23 on the occasion of the Fatherland Defenders’ Day and the 90th anniversary of the Belarusian Armed Forces, BelaPAN reports.

“Belarus will never cede its right to decide its fate by itself,” he said. “That’s why ensuring a high level of the state’s defense capability acquires particular importance in building the system of national security.”

According to the Belarusian leader, the development of military-technical cooperation with Russia, which he described as the main strategic partner, serves this purpose.

The Belarusian army forms the basis of the Belarusian-Russian Regional Group of Forces, he said. “We ensure the protection from military threats of not only ourselves but also our allies within the Collective Security Treaty Organization,” he added.

Mr. Lukashenka expressed certainty that Belarus has a strong and efficient army, which he said have entered a qualitatively new stage of development.

“On the plausible pretext of globalization, the struggle against terrorism, human rights protection and democratization, one power imposes dictation on the world community,” he said. According to him, this dictation is being implemented through “massive information expansion for the purpose of destroying the moral foundations of society, the discrediting and even physical elimination of unwanted country leaders, the defamation of governmental agencies, the army and other guarantors of military and political security, economic sanctions, and the use of military force.”

A list of so-called undemocratic regimes has been drawn up and these states have been included in an “axis of evil,” he noted. “The examples of Iraq, Yugoslavia, and several countries in Africa show what this leads to,” he said.

He insisted that the collapse of the USSR and its “virtual defeat” in the Cold War were caused by “failure to take into consideration the new conditions of people’s life, methods of influencing their consciousness, and the nature of relations between states and nations.”

“As experts say, the army was prepared after the old fashion for a past war, not a future one,” he said. “The immunity of the state and society was lost because of the self-complacence of the then leadership of the USSR, and its huge military potential turned out useless. The great power was put decades back, as was the case at the beginning of the 20th century.”