Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said on Tuesday that his country’s security forces had discovered an arsenal of weapons prepared to launch “terrorist” attacks, two days after a suspected terrorist was killed near the Polish border.
The discovery came after the Belarusian killing on Sunday in the city of Grodno, east of the Polish border, of a foreigner who was allegedly planning a terrorist attack.
The Belarusian KGB security agency said the alleged terrorist was killed in a shootout. On Tuesday, Belarusian television reported that a fake passport in the name of a Russian citizen was found on the body.
“The special services worked brilliantly,” Lukashenko said on Tuesday in the Belarusian capital, Minsk. “An entire arsenal of weapons and explosives, intended for high-profile terrorist attacks against citizens and government officials, has been confiscated.”
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Belarusian authorities have launched raids and arrests since the February 26 drone attack on a Russian A-50 military aircraft at an airport near Minsk. According to the Belarusian human rights group Viasna, more than 100 people have been arrested. Belarus hosts Russian soldiers and equipment, some of which have been deployed to the war in neighboring Ukraine.
The head of the opposition People’s Movement, Alexander Azrao, who claimed responsibility for the attack on the Russian plane, told the Associated Press that he had nothing to do with the events in Grodno. He claimed that the Belarusian authorities may have orchestrated the events in Grodno to discredit the opposition and create the appearance of a threat from NATO and Poland.
“Lukashenko is playing tricks on the situation in order to intensify repression inside the country and show the Kremlin that he is fighting both the domestic opposition and Western intelligence services,” Azaro said.
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