ALLIANCE GROWING: Russia announces military exercises with five allies

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MOSCOW – The Russian Army will conduct six joint military exercises with five countries and with the peacekeepers of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) in 2019, said the commander in chief of the Army, Oleg Saliukov.

“According to the preparation calendar of the Russian Armed Forces, by 2019 six joint military maneuvers are planned with the Armies of other countries,” Saliukov told the RedStar newspaper (Red Star).

Specifically, exercises are envisaged with soldiers from Pakistan, Mongolia, Egypt, India, Laos and the CSTO peace forces in Tajikistan.

The CSTO is made up of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan.

Saliukov said that only one of the six trainings will take place in Russian territory and will be with the Pakistani military.

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He stressed that the military troops will be trained in tactical counter-terrorism maneuvers.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan of Armenia received today candidate for the post of Secretary General of the CSTO, State Secretary of the Security Council of Belarus Stanislav Zas. The meeting was attended by Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belarus to Armenia Igor Nazaruk, the PM’s press service said.

Greeting the guests, the prime minister highlighted the fact that the candidature of the CSTO chief has been agreed upon by CSTO-member countries. “I am pleased that we came to an agreement, and on January 1, 2020 you will assume the post of CSTO secretary general on the principle of rotation. The CSTO is one of the most important elements of Republic of Armenia’s security system and Armenia is interested in working effectively with the organization. The activities of the CSTO should contribute to maintaining balance and peace in our region,” Pashinyan said.

He added that the CSTO-member states should act in accordance with the letter and spirit of the CSTO Charter. He stressed that Armenia is committed to these principles. The PM expressed the hope that the activities of Stanislav Zas will promote cooperation between the CSTO-member states in the field of security and increase the efficiency of collective security-targeted efforts.

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