(ZEROHEDGE) – Just after Moscow announced Tuesday that Russian force reserve units would be withdrawn from the Lithuanian border, top Russian officials have slammed NATO "flexing its muscle" during the ongoing 'Tobruq Legacy 2020' drills in Lithuania.
A top official, Alexander Kanshin, who heads the Association of Unions of Reserve Officers said that while "alarming," it's not expected that NATO will take "any real military action against Belarus," according to his comments in TASS.
But it was the director of Russia’s foreign intelligence service SVR, Sergey Naryshkin, who issued the most directly provocative comments Thursday. The powerful intelligence chief charged that the United States is "stage managing" the unrest in Belarus, which has since the Aug. 9 reelection of President Alexander Lukashenko sought to topple him.
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He described that U.S. intelligence, NGOs, and Western state linked media had funded ground protests to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. Over prior weekends protests in the streets of Minsk alone have swelled to 100,000 people according to most estimates.