Belgium Investigates Whether Weapons Sent to Ukraine Ended up in Russia’s Belgorod Region

Belgium was investigating whether weapons sent to help Ukraine defend its territory were used in fighting across the border, following a report that material produced by a Belgian company ended up in Russia’s Belgorod region.

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo called on Monday not to jump to conclusions because shipments made over decades and to different regions could cause weapons to turn up in unexpected places.

“The defense and information services have opened an investigation to be absolutely sure of what happened here,” De Croo told Belgian broadcaster VRT.

The Washington Post published a lengthy investigation over the weekend saying weapons from some NATO members including the United States, Poland, the Czech Republic and Belgium had turned up in Belgorod, which borders Ukraine.

The report questioned whether Ukraine had adequate controls over weapons. De Croo noted that European Union member countries provided weapons to Ukraine on the condition that they be used only inside the invaded country to defend its territory.

“The rule is very strict,” the prime minister said, as Russia would likely interpret the use of weapons outside Ukraine as a Western provocation.

Although there could be “leakage of our weapons to other conflicts”, De Croo said that if there was an element of truth to the use of weapons intended to defend Ukraine in the fighting in Russia, “we would take it extremely seriously”.

The Washington Post said its article referred to a cross-border raid by the Free Russian Legion and Russian Volunteer Corps militias, which oppose Russian President Vladimir Putin. The second group claims to have among its ranks Russians fighting on Ukraine’s side.