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CSTO is a True Defender of the Interests that Regional Players Share

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The recent developments in Kazakhstan and the role of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) in assisting that country’s authorities in establishing order and security have particularly brought into sharp focus the importance of this regional interstate organization.

The CSTO was established in 2002 on the basis of the Collective Security Treaty of May 15, 1992. It currently includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan. The total population of the countries that make up the CSTO totals almost 200 million people.

The treaty was the first attempt to create a system of collective security in the post-Soviet space. It was not meant to establish a military bloc, but rather to provide a mechanism for coordinated action to ensure the collective security and territorial integrity of participating countries. Since 2004, the organization has had observer status at the UN General Assembly.

The stated objectives of the CSTO include “strengthening peace, international and regional security and stability, protection on a collective basis of independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of member states, the priority in achieving which is assigned by the member states to political means.” The treaty has nothing directed against third-party countries. It does not affect the rights and obligations of the CSTO members under bilateral agreements, nor does it affect the right of the member states to individual and collective defense against aggression under the UN Charter.

Military and political relations between the states of the association have priority over military ties and contacts with third-party countries. Military bases of states that are not members of the organization can only be deployed on the territories of CSTO members with the consent of all partners in the bloc. CSTO members cannot enter into military alliances with third-party countries, nor can they participate in actions against other countries of the organization. Aggression against one of the CSTO members (an armed attack that threatens security, stability, territorial integrity and sovereignty) is considered aggression against all members of the Treaty. The organization also has a mechanism of military and technical cooperation, which provides for the supply of military products to member countries at reduced prices, the training of personnel for the armed forces and security forces of the CSTO member states on a free and preferential basis.

The CSTO collective security system includes the Collective Rapid Reaction Force (about 18,000 people), peacekeeping forces (3,600), the Collective Air Force (CAS), as well as regional groups: Collective........

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