Russia and Kazakhstan to hold joint war games in 2009-2011

Russia and Kazakhstan to hold joint war games in 2009-2011

14:30 | 14/ 07/ 2008

MOSCOW, July 14 (RIA Novosti) – Russia and Kazakhstan will hold joint
military exercises in 2009-2011, the two countries’ defense ministers
announced in Moscow on Monday.

Anatoly Serdyukov and Danial Akhmetov ordered their respective offices
to draft the details of the joint drills, including the timeframe,
locations and forces to be involved. The military exercises will be
held on the territories of both states.

The two ministers said that joint tactical drills to be held this
autumn as part of Center-2008 staff exercises in the Chelyabinsk Region
in the Urals, "will contribute to the further development of a united
outlook and approach to the planning of joint actions to maintain the
national security of the two countries."

Serdyukov and Akhmetov, who is currently on a two-day trip to Moscow,
also praised the military skills displayed by around 2,000 Russian and
Kazakh paratroopers who took part in a joint counterinsurgency tactical
exercise last Friday.

A Kazakh Defense Ministry spokesman said earlier that the 2008
Kazakh-Russian military cooperation program included a series of joint
operational and combat training activities.

Russia, which is a member of the Collective Security Treaty
Organization (CSTO), has been strengthening military ties with its
allies amid growing tensions over NATO expansion and U.S. missile
shield plans for Central Europe. An agreement was recently signed by
Washington and Prague on deploying a U.S. radar in the Czech Republic,
a move that did little to assuage Russian concerns for its national

The CSTO is a post-Soviet security alliance, which also comprises
Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan.

About 4,000 troops from Armenia, Russia, and Tajikistan will take part
in the four-stage Rubezh-2008 military exercises in Armenia and Russia
this summer / fall.