The head of the joint headquarters of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), Colonel-General Anatoly Sidorov, said that the issue of participation of a joint Russian-Belarusian group in the CSTO exercises in 2023 in Belarus is now being discussed.
“This issue is now being discussed, in any case, the use of forces and means on the territory of any member state (CSTO.— “b”) should be carried out according to a single concept and plan,” Mr. Sidorov said during the briefing.
The lieutenant-general also stated that he was not aware of the possibility of participation of members of the organization in the military operation in Ukraine. In his opinion, there is no need for this.
In addition, Mr. Sidorov said that the CSTO exercises “Indestructible Brotherhood-2023”, which were originally planned to be held in Armenia, would be held in Kyrgyzstan. Earlier, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan announced the inappropriateness of holding exercises in Armenia.
In January, Deputy State Secretary of the Security Council of Belarus Pavel Muraveiko announced that three of the four military exercises of the Collective Security Treaty Organization would be held on the territory of his country. According to him, in September, exercises on the interaction of the CSTO military forces, as well as reconnaissance and rear exercises, will be held in Belarus.
In 2023, Belarus will chair the CSTO. CSTO Secretary General Stanislav Zas said that the Belarusian chairmanship will be held under the motto “Through solidarity and cooperation to peace and security.” As the main goal of the CSTO in 2023, he called increasing the cohesion of its members.
In October, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed to create a joint military group with Russia. As reported in the Ministry of Defense of Belarus, the number of Russian military personnel in this group is slightly less than 9 thousand people.