Belarus Withdraws Ambassador as Ukraine Warns of Impending Attack From Belarus

(Sergei Gapon/Pool Photo via AP)

On Sunday, Ukrainian officials warned that Belarus is about to invade Ukraine as part of the Russian war Ukraine.

Ukrainian officials warned on Sunday that the Belarusian military was preparing to invade at the onset of the fifth week since Russian President Vladimir Putin’s forces first descended on Ukraine last month.

In a statement shared to Facebook, Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense said there were signs that suggested the armed forces of the Republic of Belarus were preparing for a “direct invasion” of Ukrainian territory.

Belarus borders Ukraine to the north and was reportedly used as a staging area for Russian forces.


Belarus and Russia are moving troops to the area where Belarus-Ukraine-Poland borders join. The logical presumption is that these will attack on an axis aimed south of Kiev to try to isolate that city. The attacks from the north have stalled, and a supporting attack would help shake things up.


Another ominous sign is the sudden recall of Belarus’ ambassador to Ukraine on Thursday.

Belarusian Ambassador Ihar Sokol’s sudden withdrawal from Ukraine on March 18 strikes multiple European officials and Belarusian dissidents as an ominous portent.

“Certainly, them leaving right now raises all kinds of possibilities,” a second senior European official told the Washington Examiner. “So, it is very well possible that their embassy or diplomats moving out may mean that they are close to joining the war overtly on the side of Russia, among other things.”

A direct Belarusian assault on Ukraine would worsen the fracture between the two countries. Putin has characterized Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus as “a triune people” — a statement that suggests his desire to bring both countries under Moscow’s control, but also one that reflects real societal and cultural links between the countries.


Ambassador Sokol’s departure had its own drama. As he went through the Ukrainian border control checkpoint, he was given a very special departure gift.

This is an approximate translation of the exchange.

“F*** you, you f***ing f***.”

Sorry, I had my New York plug-in to Google Translate engaged.

In fact, Belarus is already a de facto belligerent. Supplies for the Russian Army in Ukraine pass through Belarus on its railroads, and Russia launches combat sorties and missiles daily from Belarussian airbases.

The situation with Belarus is extraordinarily complicated. Belarus President and close Putin butt-boy Alexander Lukashenko seems to want to join the invasion (Belarus Prepares to Join Russia’s Unprovoked Assault on Ukraine). Early in the war, Lukashenko posed with an “invasion map,” see Oops: Belarus Leader May Have Accidentally Revealed the Next Country on Putin’s Invasion List.


While Lukashenko may be excited to help the boss man out, his people and his military aren’t big on the idea. His defense minister resigned earlier in the month to protest plans to invade Ukraine. There have been pro-Ukraine and anti-war protests in Minsk and other Belarus cities. More troubling for Lukashenko, the war in Ukraine could spell the beginning of resistance. Some Belarussians are sabotaging rail lines carrying Russian troops and supplies (Belarus Rail Lines Carrying Trains With Supplies for the Russian Army Are Being Hit by Sabotage Attacks). A battalion equivalent of Belarussians has crossed the border to fight against Russia.

Plus, Belarus’ army is 20,000 men and not trained to the exacting standards of the Russian Army. It would be mauled by Ukraine Territorial Defense Forces and have a minimal impact on the war.


The real effect of Belarus joining the fight would be an expansion of the conflict that would be unlikely to remain limited to Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus.


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