Alyaksandr Lukashenka signed agreement on the CSTO Collective Rapid Response Force (CRRF) a week ago keeping that secret from the public.
“The CSTO Secretariat received a package of documents on the CRRF creation signed by Belarusian president,” stated the spokesperson of the CSTO Vitaly Strugovets. As said by him, Alyaksandr Lukashenka signed all the documents considered at June summit of the CSTO in Moscow without exception, “Kommersant” informs.
Though reports about Belarus’ joining the CRRF appeared only yesterday, it has turned out that the Belarusian ruler signed the agreement on that last Thursday, or a day before holding the active phase of the first CRRF drills in Kazakhstan, where Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tajik and Armenian presidents were present as observers.
Anyway, Minsk’s joining the CRRF, which had been created on the initiative of Moscow, is to strengthen this stricture considerably. According to the sources in the Defence Ministry of Russia, Belarus agreed to offer about 5,000 troops to the CRRF.
“Minsk is to delegate to the collective forces one Special Forces brigade of its army, anti-terror subunit of the KGB, and Emergency Situations Ministry units. The total number of Belarusians in the CRRF to be about 5,000,” Strugovets informed.
Thus, Belarus is to become one of the key countries members of the CRRF alongside with Russia and Kazakhstan.
It is known that Moscow sent to the grouping airborne division and an assault combat brigade (about 8,000 troops). Astana was represented by an assault combat brigade (4,000 troops) and three formed from Interior Ministry Emergency Ministry detachments and state security agency units. Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan restricted themselves to battalions, and Uzbekistan refused to participate in the CRRF forming.
The decision to create the Collective Rapid Response Force of the Collective Security Treaty Organization was adopted at the summit of the organisation on February 4 2009 in Moscow.
The Collective Rapid Response Force is allegedly intended for defence of territorial integrity, sovereignty and promotion of security, overcoming large emergency situations at the territory of the CSTO countries. In peacetime the CRRF are to be deployed in the place of their home stations in national territories, and in a special period they are to be used in line with decisions of the Collective Security Council.
As www.charter97.org informed, Alyaksandr Lukashenka refused to sig the agreement on CRRF first. Experts said that in this way he took revenge on Russia for a ban on Belarusian milk export.
Lukashenka didn’t sign the agreement even after Russian-Belarusian milk war ended, and relations between Minsk and Moscow improved. On September 29 during West 2009 large-scale military exercise held in Belarus he talked to Russian president Dmitry Medvedev, and after that he promised not only to sign everything, but to head the CSTO.
Independent experts believe that the CRRF are created to suppress riots amid the crisis in the CSTO member states.
The CSTO includes f Russia, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Tadzhikistan, Armenia and Uzbekistan.