CSTO agrees to intervene in Kazakhstan unrest, eurasianet.org

A Russia-led security bloc has agreed to intervene in Kazakhstan’s spiraling unrest, the first time in the organization’s 30-year history that it has done so.

The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) acceded to a request by Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev on January 5 to send military assistance, which he said was needed ”to help Kazakhstan overcome this terrorist threat.”

A few hours later Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan – the current chair of the CSTO’s Collective Security Council – announced that the organization had agreed.

“In light of the threats to national security and sovereignty to the Republic of Kazakhstan, including from external interference,” the CSTO agreed to send the organization’s collective peacekeeping forces to Kazakhstan “for a limited period of time with the aim of stabilizing and normalizing the situation,” Pashinyan wrote in a Facebook post.[…]

The CSTO is effectively led by Russia; its other member states are Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. Article 4 of its charter states that: “In the case of aggression (an armed attack threatening safety, stability, territorial integrity and sovereignty) against any Member States, all other Member States at request of this Member State shall immediately provide the latter with the necessary aid, including military.” In his statement, Pashinyan said the CSTO forces were being sent under the provisions of Article 4.

There is no indication that the popular unrest in Kazakhstan has any external origin – it began over fuel prices in the far west of the country before quickly spreading nationwide – but that is the line that Kazakhstan’s beleaguered authorities have been pushing. ”Kazakhstan is facing armed aggression from terrorist groups trained outside of the country,” its Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement early in the morning (local time) January 6. Läs artikel