(Republicaninformer.com)- Ukrainian intelligence claimed last weekend that Russia is planning “false-flag” attacks in Belarus as a way to drag the country into its war with Ukraine. However, the US think tank The Institute for the Study of War argues that any false-flag attacks on Belarus “remain unlikely to change the domestic factors” that are currently preventing Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko from sending troops to Ukraine.
On Sunday, Ukraine’s Main Military Intelligence Directorate said Russian special services were considering conducting a false-flag operation targeting “critical infrastructure facilities” in the Grodno and Brest regions of Belarus, specifically at the Ostrovets nuclear power plants.
Ukrainian intelligence believes that such attacks could spur Minsk into action against Ukraine, and turn the tide of Belarusian public opinion toward Russia.
Last month, The Institute for the Study of War suggested that Belarus would resist entering the war in Ukraine due to the “heavy domestic risk” it would pose to the survival of Lukashenko’s regime.
Despite the Lukashenko regime’s announcement in October for a joint force with Russia, analysts from the Institute believe a more direct role in the Ukraine conflict would pose a risk to Lukashenko’s regime.
Lukashenko, who has been president since 1994, survived mass protests in Belarus following his reelection in 2020 that both the opposition and the West denounced as rigged.
While Lukashenko has publicly supported Russia’s attack on Ukraine, drawing sanctions and international criticism against Minsk, he has repeatedly dismissed speculation that Belarus would send its troops to fight alongside Russian forces in the conflict.
Opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, who has been in exile in Lithuania since 2020, recently said in an interview that if Lukashenko deploys Belarusian soldiers to Ukraine under pressure, they should lay down their arms and join the Ukrainian forces.
According to a survey conducted by the Chatham House earlier this year, less than one-tenth of the Belarusian population supported sending troops into Ukraine to fight with Russia.