Why does Belarus' Interior Ministry need a new elite unit?
Interior Ministry expects sabotage and prepares for forceful resistance/collage by Ulad Rubanau
The unit will have armored vehicles and means of combating the UVA - too much to throw students and pensioners behind bars.
A new Ministry of Internal Affairs division is to appear in Belarus. According to Interior Minister Ivan Kubrakou, the authorities have even considered the war experience in Ukraine. Why is it happening? For the sake of waging war, say the experts. But not like that in Ukraine, but for the war against the Belarusians who disagree with the policies of Lukashenka's regime.
Euroradio found out who the government is so afraid of that it is creating an elite unit, how it will affect repression, and whether the Interior Ministry will assume the role of the KGB.
"There will be both intelligence and armored vehicles"
This unit will recruit young people from special forces unit 3214.
"It will be a special purpose unit with all the necessary divisions: reconnaissance, counteraction to UAVs, even its own K9 service. This mobile unit will go anywhere and carry out the task of providing security for our citizens. There will be armored vehicles and corresponding armament," Kubrakou said.
Such a formation will appear in Minsk and later in all the regions. Almost nothing else is known.
"We [at BYPOL - Euroradio] have no additional information about this unit," says Aliaksandr Azarau, representative of the United Transition Cabinet responsible for restoring law and order.
Armored vehicles are hardly aimed at keeping priest Uladzislau Bahamolau behind bars or hunting pensioners. The authorities are waiting for sabotage and are afraid of forceful resistance, which is clearly visible abroad, Azarau believes.
"The KGB has always worked to prevent the opposition from creating resistance by force. Now it is being created - it is the "Peramoha" plan, the Cabinet has united and said that we need to make a force option to change the government; there are volunteers in Ukraine. This hasn't happened in the whole of Lukashenka's reign. They are afraid that sabotage groups will come and are preparing to meet them. I don't think it will affect the spreading of repressions.
There are enough internal troops in Belarus. But they want to create an elite unit of the Interior Ministry.
They should do more than just hit cars.
The authorities need those who are prepared to be more aggressive.
"If we consider the internal forces, we should remember what conscripts were doing in August 2020. They hit cars - and that's all they were capable of. The Interior Ministry wants to ensure that they don't just hit cars but also work like "Almaz" or "Alfa" special units. And these are small units. There are maybe 150-200 people there," Azarau continues.
According to political analyst Valery Karbalevich, creating a new unit follows the trend of increasing repression.