MOSCOW, 2 February (BelTA) – During its chairmanship in the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), Belarus will make every effort to resolve emerging crisis situations in the CSTO space, said Chairman of the Commission for Foreign Affairs, Migration Policy and Relations with Compatriots of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union State of Belarus and Russia, Chairman of the Standing Committee on International Affairs and National Security of the Council of the Republic Sergei Rachkov, BelTA has learned.
“Belarus' first priority during its chairmanship in 2023 is resolving crisis situations. All possible diplomatic efforts will be undertaken to de-escalate tensions, reduce the possibility of conflicts, and build up mutual trust through joint actions of the CSTO member states,” Sergei Rachkov said in Moscow at an expanded meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly Commission for Foreign Affairs, Migration Policy and Relations with Compatriots. Taking part in the meeting were parliamentarians of the CSTO Parliamentary Assembly.
According to him, in order to effectively respond to all kinds of crisis situations arising in the CSTO area of responsibility, Belarus intends to focus on improving the CSTO legal framework and national legal acts. “All this, in our opinion, will help take fast decisions on the use of collective security forces and means,” the parliamentarian noted.
“Special attention is to be paid to the simplified transit of contingents with weapons and military equipment through the territories of the member states,” he said. Anti-crisis mechanisms that do not imply the use of forces and means of the CSTO collective security system should be improved and become more efficient. This pertains to the use of flexible political tools: consultations, monitoring, observation on the ground. To increase coherence and strengthen interdepartmental cooperation in countering transnational challenges and security threats, Belarus intends to hold events under the auspices of appropriate departments with possible invitation of representatives of other interested countries and specialized international organizations,” the MP added.
“As biological safety and security issues are becoming increasingly relevant, there are plans to hold a meeting of the coordinating council of authorized bodies of the CSTO member states in Belarus,” Sergei Rachkov added.
“The second priority is effective self-presentation of the CSTO in the international arena,” the parliamentarian continued. “In this context, Belarus suggests holding a broad discussion of the international agenda through the lens of the CSTO interests on the sidelines of a high-level international conference on Eurasian security with the invitation of senior officials of the secretariats of the UN, the SCO, the CIS and other international organizations. The event is planned to be held in Minsk in 2023. In our opinion, by expanding partnerships with global players such as China and India, the CSTO will be able to improve its standing in the international arena,” Sergei Rachkov said.
The third priority is to beef up the military component of the CSTO. “In our opinion, the primary tasks in this area are increasing the readiness of the CSTO troops to carry out tasks for their intended purpose, as well as strengthening the military and technical cooperation of the member states,” Sergei Rachkov explained. With this in mind, a number of joint exercises involving command and control bodies and units of the CSTO collective security system will be held in the territory of Belarus in 2023. Belarus seeks to step up efforts to develop common approaches to standardization and cataloging of defense products and help build contacts between companies producing promising defense products,” the MP said.
“The fourth priority is reinforcing the analytical component, responding to information wars and media positioning. Belarus intends to focus on building up the institutional capacity of the CSTO in the information and analytical field, which is expected to help strengthen the organization, to help it respond more effectively to emerging security challenges and threats. The formation of a network of national analytical institutes for strategic studies in the member states will be a practical contribution to the implementation of the task. The Belarusian side proposes to hold a meeting of heads of national analytical institutes for strategic studies of the CSTO member states in Minsk in 2023 to discuss ways to arrange systematic work in this field,” the parliamentarian emphasized.
“The implementation of the above-mentioned proposals relies on our teamwork and support from all the CSTO member states, on which the Republic of Belarus is counting,” Sergei Rachkov added.