Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei said in an interview with RBC news agency, that "there is no practical, political, or military" need in the deployment of the Russian Air Force military base in Belarus.
Various media have repeatedly raised this topic. Moscow and Minsk previously confirmed that they are discussing this possibility.
Makei said that the issue is becoming irrelevant due to the development of modern technologies and expressed doubt that the deployment of Russian military facilities would help to strengthen stability and security in the region.
At the same time, the Minister stressed that the decision of Minsk is not related to "the influence of any external forces," only national interests are considered.
Earlier, his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov described Belarus' refusal to meet Russian request [for the air base] as "an unpleasant episode." At the same time, he noted the amiable nature of bilateral relations between the countries.
Most of Russia's military bases abroad are located in the former Soviet republics. Belarus has a unique Volga radar station, designed for long-range detection of ballistic missiles. Also, large Russian military facilities are deployed in Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and other countries.