Belarusians should train as paramilitary fighters and be prepared to resist any foreign aggression, President Alexander Lukashenko has declared.
Mr Lukashenko has repeatedly accused the West of staging plots to overthrow him and routinely describes his opponents as foreign agents. He has ordered the creation of a 120,000-strong "territorial army" made up of discharged conscripts and reserve officers.
Speaking to military officials yesterday, he reminded them of the Second World War, when Belarus was occupied by Nazi Germany and resistance mostly came from paramilitary units of partisans. "The partisan movement in Belarus is an essential part of national resistance," he said. "And we must prepare the people for that, in case something happens."