Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) | UPSC

Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) | UPSC


Russia kicks off Caspian war games

      WHY IN NEWS:

Amid Azerbaijan-Armenia conflict, Moscow says they pose no threat to any State

SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 2 : International grouping : India and other nation & institutions


For PRELIMS we thinks operations of CSTO are very important . Take your Prelims copy and note them down .Just like Amber box question in the last Prelims .

For MAINS go through weaknesses of this organisation . Let us dive in now !


Russia on Friday said its Navy had begun military exercises in the central waters of the Caspian Sea north of the Azerbaijani capital Baku.


  • Russia is insisting there was no threat to neighbouring states as Armenia and Azerbaijan battle over the Nagorno-Karabakh region.
  • The war games are taking place north of Azerbaijan’s Absheron peninsula, where Baku is located, and will include artillery and rocket fire.

Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) | UPSC

Absheron Peninsula | Sources : Wiki Commons

  • They involve six ships, seven planes and more than 400 servicemen.
  • Russia has so far kept its distance from the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia over the Armenian-controlled Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan.


But Armenia, unlike Azerbaijan, is a member of the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) military alliance .

  • CSTO forces have also been taking part in joint military exercises this week in Belarus.
  • The exercises are called “Indestructible Brotherhood”.



  • The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) is a Russia-led military alliance of seven former Soviet states that was created in 2002.

The CSTO’s purpose is to ensure the collective defence of any member that faces external aggression.

  • It has been described by political scientists as the Eurasian counterpart of NATO, which has 29 member states, while the CSTO has just six.
  • The organization supports arms sales and manufacturing as well as military training and exercises.


Moscow , Russia.


  • Current CSTO members are Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation and Tajikistan.
  • Afghanistan and Serbia hold observer status in the CSTO.

The Collective Security Treaty was signed by Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan on May 15, 1992.

  • In 1993, Azerbaijan, Belarus and Georgia joined the Treaty.
  • The Treaty came into force on April 20, 1994 for five-year period.
  • Six member-states (except Azerbaijan, Georgia and Uzbekistan) signed a protocol renewing the Treaty for another five-year period in 1999.
  • It consists of Permanent and Plenipotentiary representatives.
  • Uzbekistan again became a CSTO member in 2006 but then withdrew its membership in 2012.


  • While CSTO membership means that member states are barred from joining other military alliances, limiting, for example, their relationship with NATO.

Members receive discounts, subsidies, and other incentives to buy Russian arms, facilitating military cooperation.

  • Most importantly, membership presumes certain key security assurances – the most significant of which is deterring military aggression by third countries.
  • In the CSTO, aggression against one signatory is perceived as aggression against all.
  • It however remains unclear whether this feature works in practice.


  • The Collective Security Council (CSC) is the highest body of the CSTO and comprises the heads of member states.

The Council’s Chairman is the head of the country that holds the rotating chairmanship.

  • The Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs is the executive and advisory body of the CSTO.
  • They coordinate member states’ activities in foreign policy.

The Council of Ministers of Defense coordinate member states in military policy, capability, and cooperation.

  • The Committee of Secretaries coordinate member states in ensuring national security.
  • The Permanent Council coordinates member states in implementing decisions made by CSTO bodies in periods between CSC sessions.
  • The Secretariat is a permanent working body of the CSTO that provides organizational, informational, analytical, and consultative support to the various CSTO bodies.
  • The Joint Staff is another permanent working body which prepares proposals on military activities.


  • The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) was established on May 14, 2002.
  • The Charter of the Organization was adopted on October 7, 2002.
  • The CSTO received the status of observer at the United Nations General Assembly on December 2, 2004.

The Collective Security Council (CSC) is the highest body of the Organization.

  • The Council is composed of the Heads of the Member States.
  • The Chairman of the Council is the head of the country holding the Chairmanship of the Organization.


  • The Council discusses the fundamental issues of the Organization’s activities and makes decisions aimed at the realization of its goals and objectives.
  • The council also ensures the coordination and joint activities of the Member States to achieve these goals.


  • Interstate Commission for Military Economic Cooperation discusses and drafts recommendations aimed at ensuring multilateral military-economic cooperation in a number of areas.

The Interstate Commission for Military-Economic Cooperation meetings are held at least twice a year.

  • To manage the day-to-day activities of the Commission an Interstate Commission for Military-Economic Cooperation Secretary is appointed from the staff of the CSTO Secretariat.


  • The Working Group on Afghanistan
  • The Military Committee
  • Working Group on Information Policy and Security.

Under the aegis of the Organization the following operations are conducted:

  • CANAL’’ operation : Anti-drug regional operation
  • NELEGAL” operation : To counter the illegal migration and human trafficking
  • PROXY” operation : To counter the crimes in the cyberspace
  • NAYOMNIK” operation :  To prevent the possible involvement of the citizens of CSTO member states in the terrorist activities and to eliminate the resources of the international terrorist organizations .


  • The CSTO Collective Rapid Reaction Forces were formed on February 4 2009, to address the security threats and challenges of the CSTO member states.
  • On October 6, 2007 the agreement on the CSTO peacekeeping activity was signed.

The CSTO Collective Air Forces was formed on December 23, 2014 to increase the efficiency of the transportation and  CSTO collective security system.

  • The delegations were headed by the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Minister of Defense and the Secretary of Security Council.

      IASbhai WINDUP: 


  • While the CSTO nominally provides equal standing to member states, it was clearly conceived by Russia as a multilateral institution to project its power regionally.

The organization has given Russia the power to block NATO operations in the region and contain Chinese military influence in the region.

  • It presents a foreign policy challenge as Russian aims do not always align with other CSTO members’ interests.
  • Moreover, institutional weaknesses, the organization’s inability to react to aggression by third countries on its members, points to the inefficacy of the organization.
     SOURCES:THE HINDU | Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) | UPSC



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