CSTO Member States’s Foreign Ministers Review Coordinated Policies

May 31. MFA

CSTO Member States’s Foreign Ministers Review Coordinated Policies“Kazakhstan considers the (CSTO) as one of the important tools for interaction and coordination in this regard, which today rightly deserves to be seen as the centre of regional cooperation in the sphere of security,” the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Yerzhan Kazykhanov said at the meeting of Foreign Ministers of the member-states of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) in Minsk, Belarus on May 31.

“The focus of the leadership of our country remains, first and foremost, the issues of regional security. No single country can effectively solve the issues related to its security,” Minister Kazykhanov added.

During the meeting, the participants discussed a number of relevant issues, including on the strengthening of cooperation between the Foreign Ministries of the member-states, as well as on enhancing the CSTO’s links with other international organisations, including the UN, OSCE, EurAsEC, CIS, and the SCO.

The delegates listened to the CSTO Secretary General’s report on the implementation of agreements reached in December last year, during the Moscow session of the CSTO Collective Security Council. “As a whole, in my opinion, we have achieved a good pace on the implementation of the decisions adopted by our heads of states. I hope we will sustain this positive trend,” Kazykhanov said.

“We discussed the events which take place within the CSTO’s area of responsibility, meaning around the perimeter of the external borders of our member states, as well as in various regions of the world, including in the Middle East, North Africa and Afghanistan,” Kazakh Minister commented.

At the Minsk Ministerial the Kazakh side highlighted that besides focusing on solving problems of politico-military nature, Kazakhstan would also like the organisation to be more multifunctional, and capable of addressing problems of a wider spectrum. Minister Kazykhanov emphasised the fact of region’s close location to Afghanistan, where various threats and types of challenges originate.

There are several coordinating councils operate within the organisation, including on combating illicit drug trafficking, on combating illegal migration, and on suppression and liquidation of emergency situation.

In 2009 the CSTO established Collective Rapid Reaction Forces (CRRFs). As some delegations put it, it is exactly the CRRF which should become the universal joint force that will enable the member states to immediately respond to a wide range of the existing and potential challenges and threats to their security.

The next meeting of Foreign Ministers of the member-states of the CSTO will be held in the second half of 2011 in Moscow, before the session of the CSTO Collective Security Council.

“Overall, I am convinced that the positive trend of development and strengthening of the cooperation among the member states of the organisation in a wide range of military-political issues will continue in the future,” the Minister concluded.

The Collective Security Treaty Organisation is an international military and political alliance which was signed in 1992, and in 2002 it was granted the status of an international regional organisation. Today the CSTO brings together seven countries, including Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The CSTO should ward off external threats, protect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of its member-states without any interference in the domestic political affairs of these states. In 2004, the UN General Assembly granted the observer status to the organisation.