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13 Feb, 2009 11:19

Russia and Armenia to create joint air defense

Russia and Armenia to create joint air defense

The top-ranking official of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) said Friday that Russia and Armenia are to create a common air defense system, intended to be part of a larger CSTO air defense.

CSTO General Secretary Nikolai Bordyuzha said that the planned Russian–Armenian air defense system will be similar to the one that is already in operation between Russia and Belarus.

“The so-called joint air defense system that exists between Russia and Belarus is only one part of the system being forwarded by the CSTO,” Bordyuzha told a news conference on Friday. “We suggest the same bilateral security system to be created between Russia and Armenia.”

The official said that the long-term goal is to create a joint CSTO system.

“A regional air defense system in Eastern European, Caucasian and Central Asian regions is the first step. The issue will then focus on the creation of a single CSTO air defense system,” Bordyuzha added.

The Collective Security Treaty Organization, founded in Oct. 2002, includes Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

Currently, Armenia holds the rotating presidency of the organization.