Zyabrauka air base

A satellite image from March shows a military presence at the Zyabrauka air base, which is located some 30 kilometers from the Ukrainian border.
Several explosions have been reported in an area of Belarus near a military airport that Ukrainian authorities say has been used by the Russian Air Force to attack Ukrainian territory.

The Belaruski Hayun and Flagshtok Telegram channels quoted witnesses on August 11 as saying at least eight blasts were heard and flashes were seen near the Zyabrauka military airport in the southeastern Homel region of Belarus overnight. The base is some 30 kilometers from the border with Ukraine.

The Belarusian Defense Ministry said in a statement that at 11 p.m. on August 10, the engine of a military vehicle caught fire and "measures to extinguish the fire were undertaken," adding there were no casualties.

Zyabrauka, Belarus

Zyabrauka, Belarus
The incident came in the wake of a series of explosions at a Russian airbase in the occupied Ukrainian region of Crimea that destroyed at least nine Russian military aircraft. Kyiv has not publicly claimed responsibility for the attack. Russia's Defense Ministry has denied the Saky base in Crimea was attacked, blaming the explosions on a "violation of fire-safety requirements."


Comment: Perhaps, as with the sinking of the Moskva, foreign elements were responsible.


Ukrainian officials maintain that the Zyabrauka base in Belarus has been used by the Russian Air Force during Moscow's ongoing unprovoked war against Ukraine, which was launched in February. Last month, the military said Russia has based Iskander-M and S-400 mobile missile systems at the Belarusian airport, using them to strike Ukraine.


Comment: Presciently, back in June Russia also agreed to ship nuclear capable missiles to Belarus within months. As with the Iskanders, it's likely they're there for defensive purposes; for eventualities such as this.


August 11 marks the last day of military drills by Belarus's air force that started on August 9. Belarusian authorities said this week the exercises' second phase will be held on August 22-25 in the Ashuluk military training base in southwestern Russia near the border with Kazakhstan.

Belarus's authoritarian ruler, Alyaksandr Lukashenka, has openly supported Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Although Belarusian troops have not taken part in the invasion, Minsk allowed Russia's military to use the country's territory to enter Ukraine and shell Ukrainian towns and cities.