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13 February 2018, 12:41

Lukashenko: CSTO is seriously underestimating current situation

During the meeting
During the meeting

MINSK, 13 February (BelTA) – The CSTO is seriously underestimating the situation, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said at the meeting of the Security Council of Belarus on 13 February, BelTA has learned.

The head of state underlined that the allied relations of Belarus are becoming particularly important. Last year, the country chaired in the Collective Security Treaty Organization. “We pressed through a number of measures to beef up the armed forces of the CSTO countries, enhance military and technical cooperation, strengthen the positions in the world. I must tell you, that all our efforts notwithstanding, we proceeded carefully understanding the organization's capabilities and brought up only those issues that may be addressed in such a small format as the CSTO. It is difficult to negotiate the issues which bear great material costs. I mean armament,” the president noted.

“In general the CSTO is very seriously underestimating the situation. Russia is modernizing its armed forces. Other members are also trying to get armed, to upgrade the weapons and so on. Every country for itself,” Alexander Lukashenko said.

According to the president, Russia will be the main defender of the common space, in case of need. But there is no serious understanding in the Russian leadership of the need to strengthen the national armed forces of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and other countries in the most dangerous areas of our common defense. And this may backfire,” the Belarusian leader said.

“I am not saying that we want, or again, as they say, demand money for some things. We all should understand that Belarus is the main outpost, including that of the Russian Federation, in the west. This direction is the most dangerous today though the negative developments in Afghanistan and in the south are not reassuring either,” the head of state said.

“We need to do some thinking and make decisions in this area, at least after the presidential elections in Russia. We need to modernize our armed forces, improve and adapt them to possible military operations drawing on the experience of the present-day wars and conflicts,” the head of state said.

Alexander Lukashenko stressed that in this regard, the strategic partnership with Russia is of particular importance. “The joint strategic military exercise Zapad 2017 went well despite various speculations and the information hype. Measures are being jointly developed to remove barriers in the border and customs sectors, the visa policy, and other areas,” the president said.

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