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State Department Official Threatens Belarus with Regime Change

Jan. 19, 2022 (EIRNS)—A State Department official, briefing reporters on background on Jan. 18, threatened to overthrow the Belarusian government of President Alexander Lukashenko if Belarus allows Russian troops on its territory and/or participates in a supposed Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“We’ve seen warning signs that the dynamics inside Belarus are enabling Russia to further prey on Lukashenko’s self-inflicted vulnerability. The reports of Russian troop movements towards Belarus, which these movements are supposedly under the auspices of regularly scheduled joint military exercises, are concerning. The timing is notable, and of course raises concerns that Russia could intend to station troops in Belarus under the guise of joint military exercises in order, potentially, to attack Ukraine from the north,”

he said, according to the State Department transcript of the briefing. “I believe Belarus’s complicity in such an attack would be completely unacceptable to Belarusians and to many inside the regime, as well as to us and our allies and partners. And we’ve made our concerns known to the Belarusian authorities privately.”

Later in the briefing, the official later expressed a dim view of Lukashenko’s future, blaming his supposed weaknesses on his relationship with Moscow. “ I think it’s important to sort of take a look at where he stands after a year and a half of trying to ignore, turn away from a political crisis that was largely of his own making, right,” he said.

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