Minsk protests to Ukraine after air defense missile falls on Belarus

Ukraine Air Force S-300 anti-air missile system
Ukraine Air Force

Belarus authorities have claimed that they intercepted an anti-air missile above the Brest region, southwest of the country, on December 29, 2022.  

The missile fell in a field near Ivanava, about 20 kilometers from the border with Ukraine. Allegedly it had been fired by a Ukrainian S-300 air defense system. The incident occurred as a new wave of Russian missiles targeted critical infrastructure in Ukraine. 

Consequently, the Belarusian Foreign Ministry summoned Igor Kizim, the Ukrainian ambassador to Belarus. 

“We have called on the Ukrainians to thoroughly investigate all the circumstances of this missile launch, to hold those responsible to account, and to take comprehensive measures to prevent such incidents from happening again in the future, as they may have catastrophic consequences for everyone,” the ministry said in a press release. 

The Ukrainian authorities suspect a “deliberate provocation” from Russia in an attempt to involve Belarus in the invasion of Ukraine.  

“The Ukrainian side does not exclude a deliberate provocation by the Russian terrorist state, which has traced such a route for its cruise missiles in order to provoke their interception in the airspace above the territory of Belarus,” said the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense, adding that it was ready to participate in an investigation to establish the circumstances of this “incident.” 

Consequences of Russia’s bombing of Ukraine 

This is not the first time that one of Russia’s bombing campaigns has had consequences for countries neighboring Ukraine.  

On October 31, 2022, debris from a Russian missile targeted at Ukraine fell on the Moldovan village of Naslavcea after it was intercepted by the Ukrainian air defense. The target of the missile strikes carried out by Russia at that time was the Ukrainian dam Dnestrovsk1 on the Nistru river that runs through Ukraine and Moldova.  

On November 15, 2022, a missile fell onto a grain silo in the village of Przewodow in Poland, 7 kilometers (4 miles) from Ukraine’s border. The resulting explosion killed two people. It was later established that this missile was fired by the Ukrainian air defense to intercept Russian missiles. 

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