BREST REGION, BELARUS – OCTOBER 22, 2019: Servicemen after descending with parachutes during a joint military drill held by Russia and Belarus, in the village of Muchavec. Natalia Fedosenko/TASS Áåëîðóññèÿ. Áðåñòñêàÿ îáëàñòü. Âîåííîñëóæàùèå ïîñëå äåñàíòèðîâàíèÿ âî âðåìÿ ñîâìåñòíûõ áåëîðóññêî-ðîññèéñêèõ òàêòè÷åñêèõ ó÷åíèé â äåðåâíå Ìóõîâåö. Íàòàëèÿ Ôåäîñåíêî/ÒÀÑÑ

MINSK, August 28. /TASS/. Large-scale tactical drills kicked off in the Grodno area in western Belarus, the republic’s Defense Ministry reported on Friday.

“A comprehensive tactical exercise with a consolidated grouping of forces is running in the Grodno tactical area under the direction of the troop commander of the Western Operational Command. The consolidated force grouping includes mechanized, armored, parachute, artillery and engineering units and also the teams of unmanned aerial vehicles and electronic warfare systems,” the Defense Ministry reported on its Telegram channel.

The comprehensive drills include qualification firing and battalion-level maneuvers with a live-fire exercise and qualification special training measures. Military pilots are accomplishing assignments for protecting the state border in the airspace while electronic warfare squads are conducting reconnaissance, the statement says.

The Belarusian Defense Ministry earlier announced that comprehensive tactical drills of a consolidated force grouping would take place on August 28-31 under the direction of the troop commander of the Western Operational Command. A consolidated grouping of forces was set up to comprise airborne, motorized infantry, tank and artillery units, squads of unmanned aerial vehicles and electronic warfare systems, it specified.

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko earlier instructed the Defense Ministry to closely follow NATO forces’ movements in Poland and Lithuania and put the troops on high alert on the country’s western borders, noting the escalation of tension in the region.

Belarusian Defense Minister Viktor Khrenin issued an order on August 19 to beef up the grouping of forces in the Grodno area with the battalions of tactical missiles and multiple rocket launchers and with a squad of drones and air defense systems.

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