MOSCOW, 16 May (BelTA) – Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko is taking part in the summit of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) in Moscow on 16 May, BelTA has learned.
The heads of all six member states, as well as CSTO Secretary General Stanislav Zas arrived at the Grand Kremlin Palace that is hosting the Summit of Leaders of the CSTO. The summit is timed to the 30th anniversary of the Collective Security Treaty and the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Collective Security Treaty Organization. “The summit provides for a joint meeting of the leaders as well as their separate communication during breakfast,” Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the Russian president, had informed earlier.
The ongoing summit is actually the first fully offline meeting of the CSTO leaders since November 2019 when the Collective Security Council meeting was held in Bishkek. Subsequent summits were held via video link due to the coronavirus pandemic. A face-to-face meeting of the heads of state took place only in September 2021 on the sidelines of the SCO summit in Dushanbe, but back then not all the CSTO leaders were present at the negotiating table.
Aleksandr Lukashenko is expected to hold talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. One of the main topics of discussion will be the development of cooperation and joint work on import substitution.
The Collective Security Treaty Organization was instituted by the Collective Security Treaty signed in Tashkent on 15 May 1992 by the leaders of Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Belarus, Azerbaijan and Georgia joined it in 1993. The treaty entered into force on 20 April 1994.
Article 4 of the treaty reads: “If one of the participating states is subjected to aggression by any state or group of states, this will be considered as aggression against all parties to this treaty. In the event of an aggression against any of the participating states, all other participating states will provide it with the necessary assistance, including military assistance, as well as other types of support in order to exercise the right to collective defense in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter.”