Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko accused Russia of lying about the arrest of a group of Russian mercenaries in Belarus.
Lukashenko said he would protect Belarus from opponents he portrayed as wreckers controlled by “puppet masters” abroad. Russia has said the detained men were transiting Belarus to a third country, but Lukashenko said those assertions were “all lies”.
“These people have given testimony and said they were sent specially to Belarus. Their order was to wait (for further instructions),” he said.