Alexander Lukashenka instructed Belarusian border troops to completely close the border with Ukraine. He made a relevant announcement at the celebrations on the occasion of Belarus Independence Day.

According to Lukashenka, the reason for this decision is alleged “huge piles of weapons” coming from Ukraine to Belarus.

In addition, he noted that “sleeping” terrorist cells, so-called self-defence units, had been exposed in the country. The purpose of these cells is to forcibly change power on “X-Day.”

“They themselves do not yet know what kind of ‘X-Day’ it is: our people should be led up to it,” Lukashenka said, adding that Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, the United States, and Germany seemed to be the coordinators.

In response to these allegations, Oleg Nikolenko, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, said that Ukraine had not received official notifications about the closure of the border by Belarus.

“Ukraine categorically rejects Alexander Lukashenka’s accusations of an alleged supply of weapons from Ukraine. We have never interfered in the internal affairs of Belarus. We are not going to do that in the future. We expect the same position from Minsk so that the northern border remains a space of security,” the diplomat said.

He also noted that Ukraine’s policy was aimed at supporting the legitimate interests of the Belarusian people, who “deserve a decent life in a democratic country where human rights are respected and the rule of law exists.”

Meanwhile, the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine reports that there had been no significant changes in the situation or a decrease in cross-border operations on the Ukraine–Belarus border over the past 24 hours.

It is noted that the Zhytomyr and Chernihiv border divisions last night received information from the border guards of Belarus that they had switched to enhanced border protection from 20:00 on 2 July. However, the Ukrainian side emphasises that this is a common practice during the celebration of various significant holidays, including Independence Day of the Republic of Belarus.

Bohdan Marusyak

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