Belarusian Air Forces Complete Training on Operating Russian Nuclear Weapons

An Iskander ballistic missile being launched.

Su-25 pilots from the Belarusian Air Force have completed their training program on the use of Russian tactical nuclear weapons. The training took place inside Russian territory and airspace, the training is the first step in Russia’s plans to deploy the weapons on Belarusian territory. Putin said that construction of the necessary storage facilities will be completed by July 1 this year. Russia also provided Belarus with Iskander short-range ballistic missiles, which can be armed with nuclear warheads.

Russian leadership has emphasized that the deployed nuclear weapons will remain in control of Russia, similar to U.S. nuclear weapons in Europe. Belarusian President Lukashenko has suggested that Russia could deploy assets from its strategic nuclear weapons in the future. Something NATO has warned against.