Disinfo: NATO is preparing to use force against Belarus

Summary

Minsk accused NATO of preparing to use force against Belarus. The United States and NATO are stepping up their efforts to develop the airspace of Poland and the Baltic countries. All of these testifies to the fact that the activity of the West on the territory of the Eastern European states, including Poland and the Baltic states, is aimed at preparing for the use of force. And taking into account the statements of certain politicians about the historical belonging of the western regions of Belarus to Poland, the already deployed groupings of forces from the NATO Joint Armed Forces, which are now located, including in Poland, Lithuania, can be involved, of course, at the present time.

Disproof

There is no reason for NATO, a collective defence organisation, to invade Belarus. This is part of a Russian disinformation campaign on post-electoral events in Belarus, merged with recurrent pro-Kremlin narratives portraying NATO as an ever-aggressive organisation.

NATO's leadership has repeatedly denied statements about the build-up of the alliance's forces near the western border of Belarus.

"There is no NATO buildup in the region. NATO’s multinational presence in the eastern part of the Alliance is not a threat to any country. It’s strictly defensive, proportionate & designed to prevent conflict & preserve peace," said NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu on 16 August.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg reiterated this thesis on 27 August 2020 and stressed that NATO respects the sovereignty and borders of Belarus. He also called on the Belarusian authorities to respect the fundamental freedoms of citizens, including the right to peaceful protest.

"All NATO Allies support a sovereign and independent Belarus. The regime in Minsk must demonstrate full respect for fundamental rights, including freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest. NATO has no military build-up in the region. So any attempt to use that as an excuse to crack down on peaceful protesters is absolutely unjustified" - emphasised Stoltenberg.

See other examples of pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives in Belarus, such as claims that Belarus mobilised its air force fearing an imminent NATO invasion, that NATO builds up military forces on the border with Belarus, that the EU reaction to Lukashenko’s victory is an example of Western double standards; that A military group is being formed in NATO to occupy western Belarusian lands; that NATO and Poland establish a unit, which is supposed to take over the territory of Western Belarus.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 224
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 07/12/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Baltic states, Lithuania, Belarus, Poland
  • Keywords: Territorial dispute, security threat, NATO, Baltic states

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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