Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has invited Moscow, at talks with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, to hold new joint military drills after the Slavic Fraternity exercise, which is currently ongoing in Belarus.
“We have reached agreement with the Russian president [Vladimir Putin] to continue the Slavic Fraternity drills, now ongoing near Brest, on the Belarusian territory. We welcome the drills, and it is great that they are ongoing … We must think about the second stage of the drills and some other drills, we must draft a plan, without looking about and focusing on who tells what. We are not going to bother anyone and act boldly, but we must defend our interests,” Lukashenko said, as quoted by the Belarusian state-run Belta news agency.
Serbia was also expected to take part in the Slavic Fraternity drills, but it decided last week to freeze participation in joint military exercises with foreign nations for six months, due to desire to remain neutral.