On May 16, President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev took part in the anniversary summit of the leaders of the member states of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), timed to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Collective Security Treaty (CST) and the 20th anniversary of the creation of the Organization. During the event, which was also attended by the Prime Minister of Armenia, the presidents of Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, the heads of state discussed key issues of cooperation within the Organization, current international and regional problems and measures to further improve the collective security system.
“The support of CSTO partners is important for us”
Greeting his colleagues in the Collective Security Council, Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev paid tribute to the fruitful and well-coordinated work of the CSTO peacekeeping contingent during the tragic January events in Kazakhstan.
“In fact, this is the first time that the CSTO peacekeeping potential was actually used to ensure the security, stability and integrity of one of the member states. For us, it is fundamentally important not only military, but, above all, the moral support of our partners in the CSTO. All member states of the Organization acted as a united front, strongly supported the appeal of Kazakhstan,” Tokayev said, expressing confidence that the Organization would gain useful positive experience, analyze “bottlenecks” and draw appropriate conclusions, and make adjustments to regulatory documents.
“In general, I want to emphasize,” the President of Kazakhstan continued, “that the CSTO has shown its relevance and effectiveness as an authoritative military-political organization. This is a really working mechanism for ensuring the stability and security of our states. Therefore, it is important for us to further strengthen the powerful potential of the CSTO. Kazakhstan will make its contribution to this matter.”
Kassym-Jomart Tokayev recalled that the main tasks of the Organization are to strengthen peace and stability, international and regional security, protect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of member states. According to him, over the past three decades, the CSTO has established itself as an effective mechanism for multilateral cooperation with serious potential for further development. Among the main achievements of the Organization, the head of the republic called the successful functioning of the permanent working bodies of the CSTO, various formats of close cooperation, as well as strengthening the power, law enforcement and peacekeeping potential.
In his speech, the President of Kazakhstan touched upon such topical issues as countering international terrorism and extremism, drug and arms trafficking, illegal migration, including in the context of the unstable situation in Afghanistan.
“The situation in this country, as well as the unrelenting activity of armed groups on the territory of Afghanistan, continues to threaten the security and stability of our states. I believe that the CSTO must take into account all potential threats and pay even more attention to ensuring the security of the southern borders of Central Asia,” Tokayev said.
The head of the republic called strengthening the potential of the CSTO peacekeeping forces another urgent task.
“In our opinion, it is already necessary to set the task of connecting the CSTO to the UN peacekeeping activities. This step will strengthen the legal personality of the CSTO, ensure the practice of the Organization’s participation in international peacekeeping operations,” the President of Kazakhstan stressed.
According to him, the main thing is to prevent the recurrence of tragic events in the entire space of collective security in the future.
“I think this is our main task for the near future. Kazakhstan is ready for this work and will always support its allies,” Kassym-Jomart Tokayev summed up.
“We will oppose any attempts to glorify Nazism”
Following the meeting, the leaders of the CSTO member states adopted the anniversary Statement of the Collective Security Council. Presidents of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan. Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan confirmed their attitude to common historical and political values.
“We strongly condemn any attempts to falsify historical events related to our common contribution to counteracting Nazi aggression. Together we will continue to oppose any attempts to glorify Nazism and spread neo-Nazism, as well as racism and xenophobia. We honor the memory of the ancestors who died during the Great Patriotic War, we condemn the manifestations of the “war” with monuments in honor of the fighters against Nazism, the whitewashing of participants in the Nazi movement and their accomplices. We express our serious concern in connection with attempts to ban at the legislative level the symbols associated with the Victory over Nazism. We emphasize that the facts of the expulsion and extermination of the civilian population of the USSR by the Nazis and their accomplices, established in the Judgment of the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg, should be regarded as genocide of the peoples of the Soviet Union.
“Issuing this Statement in connection with the 30th anniversary of the Collective Security Treaty and the 20th anniversary of the CSTO, we confirm that the Organization will consistently ensure the security, sovereignty and territorial integrity of its member states, work to strengthen global and regional security, a fair settlement of international problems on the basis of universally recognized norms and principles of international law,” the document signed by all participants of the summit ends with these words.
30 years on guard
Recall that the Collective Security Treaty (CST) was signed on May 15, 1992 in Tashkent and initially, in fact, was a regional agreement on cooperation and mutual understanding in the military-political field. Ten years later, on May 14, 2002, in Moscow, the Collective Security Council decided to transform the mechanisms and structures of cooperation between the CST member states into an international regional organization – the Collective Security Treaty Organization, giving it the appropriate status. The supreme body of the CSTO is the Collective Security Council, which includes the heads of the member states of the Organization. On September 18, 2003, the CSTO Charter came into force. In 2004, the Organization received observer status in the UN General Assembly.
In accordance with Article 3 of the Charter, the goals of the Organization are to strengthen peace, international and regional security and stability, to protect on a collective basis the independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Member States.
The key Article 4 of the Treaty reads: “If one of the States Parties is subjected to aggression by any state or group of states, then this will be considered as aggression against all States Parties to this Treaty. In the event of an act of aggression against any of the participating States, all other participating States will provide it with the necessary assistance, including military assistance, as well as support with the means at their disposal in order to exercise the right to collective defense in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter.
To date, the Organization includes six countries: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan. In 2022, Armenia will chair the CSTO.