In the spring of 1944 the Germans were anxiously waiting for the landing of the Allied Forces in France. Army Group North retreated from Leningrad and Army Group South left Crimea.
Conditions of Army Group Center in Byelorussia seemed to be stable. Soviet attempts to go to the offensive near Vitebsk and Orsha failed. Waiting for the attacks of the Red Army in Ukraine, the main German powers being tanks and aircraft was transferred to the southern territories. As a response the Soviet Command decided to strike on the enemy in Byelorussia. Operation Bagration provided for 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.
The Soviet Command planned to annihilate the entire German Army Group Center. Commander of the 1st Belorussian Front Konstantin Rokossovsky proposed to deliver a double thrust towards Bobruysk and Slutsk. The troops of the three Soviet fronts were successful in heir advance towards the liberation of Minsk. It took them a week to complete the annihilation of the German troops surrounding the Belorussian capital. And already on 17th June columns of prisoners were led through Moscow streets. A broad-front offensive was launched at all fronts resulting in individual units reaching the coast of the Gulf of Riga.