Conditions of Army Group Center in Byelorussia seemed to be stable. Soviet attempts to go on the offensive near Vitebsk and Orsha failed. Waiting for the attacks of the Red Army in Ukraine, the main German forces, primarily tanks and aircraft, were transferred to the southern territories. As a response, the Soviet Command decided to strike the enemy in Byelorussia. Operation Bagration provided for the encirclement and annihilation of the enemy on the Soviet flanks near Vitebsk and Bobruysk and thus intercepting the retreat of the entire German grouping to Minsk.