Belarus Facilities To Hold Russian Tactical Nukes Will Be Ready July 7-8, Putin Announces
June 10, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—Russian President Vladimir Putin used the visit of Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko to make public the fact that the storage facilities being prepared to house Russian tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus will be ready on July 7-8. In a portion of the exchange between the two leaders that was posted on the Kremlin site, Putin said that progress in building the needed facilities “is developing unexpectedly well or at least at a fast pace, knock on wood.... As for security, we will talk about it behind closed doors, one on one. Overall, the situation is stable, and I would even say good. We are collaborating confidently in this area.”
Regarding the nuclear facilities:
“We are proceeding on schedule with regard to the most sensitive issues, which we have coordinated. As you know, the preparation of the relevant facilities will be finished on July 7—8, after which we will immediately start the process of deploying the corresponding types of weapons in your territory. So, everything is going to plan consistently.”
U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said on June 9, after Putin’s remarks had been reported:
“We’re doing the best we can to monitor,” he told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. “We don’t see anything out there that shows us that there’s an imminent indication of movement of nuclear capabilities, or imminent risk of nuclear war inside Ukraine or even on the continent. We’ve seen nothing that would cause us to change our own deterrent posture when it comes to those kinds of capabilities,”
Washington has sharply criticized Putin’s decision to locate some tactical nuclear weapons on Belarus territory—made in response to the U.K. sending depleted uranium ammunition to Kiev—but the Russian government has noted that the U.S. has had American nukes on foreign soil in Europe and elsewhere for decades.