Belarus Flag for Belarus

Country Spotlight

Belarus gained independence following the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union and inherited a nuclear weapons infrastructure. It transferred all remaining nuclear weapons to Russia by 1996. Today, Belarus is a close ally of Russia who participated in Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine. In February 2022, Ukraine amended its constitution to allow Russia to deploy nuclear weapons on Belarussian territory.

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Region   Former Soviet Union

Article 18 Until 2022, enshrined Belarus's non-nuclear status.

1992 Transferred all Soviet chemical weapons back to Russia

1st Nuclear power plant currently under construction


Nuclear

  • 2022 constitutional change renounced Belarus's non-nuclear status
  • Possesses 230 kg of highly-enriched uranium (HEU); talks to repatriate HEU to Russia collapsed in 2011
  • Joined the NPT as a non-nuclear weapons state in July 1993


Biological

  • Has never possessed an offensive biological weapons program


Missile

  • Did not inherit any major missile production or design facilities from the Soviet Union
  • Collaborates with Russia on missile design, production, and defense
  • Began producing Polonez, a short-range multiple-launch missile system, in 2017 with the help of China


Chemical

  • Has not attempted to restart a chemical weapons program since the removal of Soviet WMDs in the 1990’s

Treaties and Regimes Memberships

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NPT

The NPT is a treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons through the three pillars of non-proliferation, disarmament, and peaceful use of nuclear energy.

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Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)

The CIS is an association that coordinates the facilitation of free movement of goods, services, labor force, and capital between member states. It also promotes cooperation on security matters.

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Treaty on Open Skies

The Treaty on Open Skies authorizes the militaries of States Parties to conduct unarmed reconnaissance flights over other States Parties' territories.

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Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM)

The Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) focuses on the physical protection of peaceful use of nuclear materials

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Facilities

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NTI Board members Mullen, Nunn, and Moniz on “What Xi Must Tell Putin Now”

Opinion

NTI Board members Mullen, Nunn, and Moniz on “What Xi Must Tell Putin Now”

In a new Washington Post op-ed headlined “What Xi Must Tell Putin Now,” NTI Board members Mike Mullen, Sam Nunn, and Ernest J. Moniz call on China to wield its “unique position of influence” to encourage more “rational” decision-making by Russian President Vladimir Putin.


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