Is Moldova next? Belarus President Lukashenko's photo with battle map goes viral

The viral map of eastern Europe details Russian lines of attack in Ukraine, some of which have already taken place, such as Russian advance towards Kyiv from the north and towards Kherson from Crimea.

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko

Is Moldova Russia’s next target? A video of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has gone viral that shows him pointing towards what seems to be like a battle map detailing Russia’s attack plans in Ukraine.

The video is from Lukashenko’s address to the Belarus Security Council on March 1, 2022 and was posted online by his regime. Lukashenko is a close ally of Vladimir Putin and his country has served as a Launchpad for the Russian attacks on Ukraine.

The video shows the Belarusian President standing in front of a detailed invasion map of Ukraine. The map reportedly hints towards a possible attack on Moldova. 

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What does the viral map exactly show?

The viral map of eastern Europe details Russian lines of attack in Ukraine, some of which have already taken place, such as Russian advance towards Kyiv from the north and towards Kherson from Crimea.

The map also details several attacks that are yet to take place such as one that appears to point from the port city of Odessa into Moldova, suggesting possible Russia plans to invade Ukraine's tiny neighbour.

A Belarusian journalist Tadeusz Giczan tweeted the video with a post that read, “At today's security council meeting, Lukashenko showed what looks like an actual invasion map. It shows Ukraine military facilities destroyed by missiles from Belarus, attacks directions (everything agrees except Odessa-Transnistria). Also, Ukraine is divided into 4 sectors.”

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Will Vladimir Putin’s war stretch beyond Ukraine?

Many experts are of the opinion that Vladimir Putin's military offensive will not stop at Ukraine. The viral map is again a proof of that despite many claiming that it could have other interpretations.

Several reports claim that Putin’s ally Lukashenko 'by mistake' displayed the invasion map revealing areas that are yet to come under attack in the coming few days.

The claim is however, disputed with some saying that what Lukashenko said in the meeting was that Belarus is deploying more forces on its border with Ukraine. 

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About Moldova

  • Moldova is small landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered by Romania to the west and Ukraine to the north, east, and south. Its capital and largest city is Chisinau. 
  • Most of Moldovan territory was a part of the Principality of Moldavia from the 14th century till 1812, when it was ceded to the Russian Empire by the Ottoman Empire.
  • During the 1917 Russian Revolution, the nation became an autonomous state within the Russian Republic, known as the Moldavian Democratic Republic. It declared its independence in February 1918 and integrated into Romania later that year following a vote of its assembly.  The decision was disputed by the Soviet Union.
  • The Soviet Union established a Moldavian autonomous republic (MASSR) within Ukrainian SSR in 1924. Moldova declared itself a neutral state when the Soviet Union ceased to exist in December 1991. It gained formal recognition as an independent state at the United Nation in March 1992.
  • In 1994, Moldova became a member of NATO's Partnership for Peace program. It also became a member of the Council of Europe in June 1995. 
  • A pro-European candidate, Maia Sandu was elected as the new President of the Republic in the November 2020 Presidential Elections. She became the first female elected President of the country.
  • The country’s Prime Minister is also a woman- Natalia Gavrilița, whose party recorded a landslide win in the snap parliamentary elections that were called in July 2021 after Presidetn Sandu dissolved the Parliament.
  • Moldova President Maia Sandu condemned the act of war by Russia against Ukraine, calling it "a blatant breach of international law and of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity." The country’s Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilita also stated on February 28 that Moldova should rapidly move to become a member of the European Union.

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