During a military graduation ceremony on 12 July 2022, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko stated that NATO’s Russian invasion plans go through Ukraine and Belarus.

He revealed that he had discussed by phone at length the day before with Russian President Vladimir Putin, touching on the Russian special operation in Ukraine, the illegal Lithuanian embargo against traffic between Russia and its exclave of Kaliningrad and, above all, the strengthening of the Russia-Belarus joint defense.