Kyrylo Budanov: In the global game, Russia is no longer playing — it is being played
The first Russian nuclear warheads were recently delivered to the territory of Belarus.
This was reported by the Chief of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Kyrylo Budanov, in an interview with "1+1".
According to him, the risk of using nuclear weapons from the territory of Belarus is zero.
"This is a major geopolitical game. What's the point of placing nuclear weapons in Belarus? When [the Russians] say it's in response to the NATO bloc, what's the point of putting nuclear weapons on the front line? It will either be destroyed or captured," explained Kyrylo Budanov.
The head of Ukrainian Military Intelligence also described the results of the massive Russian exercises with nuclear simulators conducted in Belarus.
"I've read the original documents regarding the results of the exercises. The documents are quite unfavorable for Belarus: the Russian 12th Main Directorate, which is responsible for these means, wrote that as a result of the exercises with nuclear simulators for the Iskander system, which is in Belarus in a small quantity, it was recognized as completely unready to operate such weaponry," said the Chief of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.
At the same time, Belarusians demonstrated a high level of proficiency in operating equipment like the "Tochka-U" with a range of up to 120 kilometers.
"Nuclear warheads for the 'Tochka-U,' Soviet ones, were actually being disposed of. So, what's happening now is that 'Rosatom' is taking them out of disposal, not from military arsenals, extending their shelf life for exactly one year, simply by writing that they can be used for another year, and they're sending them to Belarus. In other words, they are also solving the disposal issue," Kyrylo Budanov explained.
This factor allows Russia to potentially manipulate and blackmail Belarus.
"In a year, the Russians will say: the shelf life has expired, do something for us, or we'll take [the warheads] back," said the Chief of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.
In addition to warheads for the 'Tochka-U,' the Russians have also placed nuclear bombs for Su-24M aircraft in Belarusian territory. All of this is evidence of Kremlin's attempts to play in the global political game.
"This is purely a means of raising the stakes in a major geopolitical game: Russia believes it's still playing, but it's no longer playing; it is now being played by others. These are its last-ditch efforts," emphasized Kyrylo Budanov.
Commenting on the so-called "red lines" frequently mentioned by the aggressor state, particularly regarding the occupied Crimean Peninsula, the head of Ukrainian Military Intelligence reminded about international law and the inevitability of liberating all Ukrainian territories.
"Crimea will be returned. No Russia can be there. Crimea is ours, and it belongs to no one else," Kyrylo Budanov emphasized.