Russian NATO warns of ‘full-blown’ war

Fri, 16 Oct 2009 19:10:36 GMT

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Russian Special Forces gunship

A Russian-led security organization, seen as a counterforce for NATO, has proposed the boosting of the body’s armed capabilities, voicing concerns about the situation in Afghanistan.

Nikolay Bordyuzha, the Secretary-General of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which is composed of Russia and six other ex-Soviet states, said, “We’ve long been talking about the necessity to create a large group in the Central Asia region.” 

“We have the collective rapid response forces (KSOR), and the collective rapid deployment forces (KSBR) there intended for containing local armed conflicts. But what if we have a full-blown war?”

“Therefore we say: We need a large group of troops…,” he added.

“The situation in Afghanistan, which borders on the CSTO zone and members of our organization, is very acute and dangerous.”

Analysts believe the body was initially formed to keep up with the increasing influence of the western alliance and its possible expansion toward Russian borders bringing together Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The membership’s contingents are currently engaged in a large-scale military exercise in southern Kazakhstan during which they have among other things practiced cracking down on ‘the threats of terrorism’ using aerial bombardment and tank battalions.

Attending the event, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said, “This alliance was created in an unprecedented short time and that pace should be kept in the future.”

The developments came as the massive US and NATO military presence in Afghanistan, where the West has deployed more than 100,000 troops, is falling short of curbing the violence.

The operations have also continuously brought about civilian casualties since August when a United Nations report pointed to 1,500 deaths since the beginning of the year.

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