The Belarusian army conducts training with the Russian Wagner Group. The training site is to be a training ground near Brest, on the border between Belarus and Poland, the Ministry of Defense in Minsk reported. “Poland’s borders are safe, we are monitoring the situation on an ongoing basis,” the Polish Ministry of Defense assured.
Training – according to Minsk’s announcement – is to last at the training ground near Brest for a week. They are attended by units of the Belarusian Special Operations Forces together with representatives of the Wagner Group. Reuters reminded that it is only five kilometers east of the Polish border. According to the assessments of the Belarusian military intelligence (HUR) on Belarus by Wednesday, about 700 mercenaries from the Wagner Group had arrived. On the same day, another column of Wagner cars, consisting of about 100 vehicles, entered Belarus.
“Poland’s borders are secure, we are monitoring the situation on our eastern border on an ongoing basis and we are prepared for various scenarios as the situation develops,” the Polish Ministry of National Defense told American journalists.
ISW about Wagner Group fighters in Belarus
The American Institute for War Studies (ISW) in its latest report reported that on July 18 and 19, the owner of the Wagner Group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, visited the Wagner base in Osipowicze in the Mogilev region of Belarus. He handed over the mercenary banner to the commander nicknamed Pionier, who – according to ISW – will command the Wagner Group in Belarus.
“Prigozhin stated that the staff of the Wagner Group will stay in Belarus ‘for some time'” and that “after regrouping in Belarus, he will embark on a new journey to Africa” - reports the ISW. Another commander, presented as Dmitry Utkin – the main commander of the Wagnerians, from whose pseudonym (“Wagner”) the name of the formation was derived – said that “this is only the beginning of the greatest work that will be done soon” – reported the ISW.
On June 24, the Wagnerians occupied the headquarters of the Russian army in Rostov-on-Don, and then began to advance towards Moscow. Prigozhin, a mercenary chief who has long been at odds with the part of the Russian military establishment commanding the invasion of Ukrainedemanded “restoring justice” in the army and removing the defense minister from power Sergey Shoigu.
However, less than a day after these events, Prigozhin announced a retreat and the withdrawal of mercenaries to field camps to “avoid bloodshed”. This was supposed to be the result of negotiations between the Belarusian authoritarian leader Alyaksandr Lukashenko and Prigozhin, conducted in consultation with Vladimir Putin.
The first information about the possible assignment of the Wagner Group to Belarus was published by the Russian independent media at the end of June. They predicted that about 8,000 mercenaries would be stationed in the Mogilev region, in the Osipowicz region. There is a recently abandoned and then hastily renovated base in the village of Cel – a former military base of the Belarusian missile forces.
Main photo source: twitter.com/MOD_BY