Joint military drills of CSTO to be held in Kazakhstan10 august 2014, 12:39
Joint military drills Interaction 2014 of the Collective Rapid Reaction Force of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) will be held in Kazakhstan on August 18-22,2014, Tengrinews reports citing Kazakhstan's Defence Ministry.
The drills will take place in Spassk military range in Karaganda Oblast, in central Kazakhstan. It will involve more than 3,000 participants, over 200 land military vehicles and around 30 aircrafts from Kazakhstan, Russia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Armenia.
In January, announcing the plans to hold the joint exercise, Defence Minister of Russia Sergey Shoigu said that the training would focus on responding to threats issuing from Afghanistan. "I first of all mean the threats related to Afghanistan. As you all know, most of the collision forces military personnel will be withdrawn from Afghanistan this year. This raises concerns," he said, adding that the situation in Afghanistan called for implementation of a large-scale stabilisation project before withdrawing the forces from the country.
"I think that this year's exercise will be more large-scale and more applied in the same time. We have a number of threats that concern us. And we want to make sure that we are ready to respond to them," the Russian Minister said after the meeting with his Kazakhstani counterpart Adilbek Dzhaksybekov.
In 2013 the joint exercise was held in Belarus and in 2012 it took place in Armenia.
The CSTO established in 1992 is an intergovernmental military alliance consisting of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan. The rapid reaction force was established to counter terrorism, extremism, drug trafficking and to enhance the CSTO's role in ensuring international security.
Writing by Assel Satubaldina, editing by Tatyana Kuzmina