Burabay hosts Council of Heads of CIS States
The prime ministers of the CIS member-countries have begun a meeting of the Council of CIS Heads of State. The event is being held in the resort village of Burabay in Kazakhstan.
The event was attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rakhmon, President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of Moldova, Andrei Galbur, Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan, Satlyk Satlykov, Charge d'Affaires of Ukraine in the Republic of Kazakhstan, Yuri Lazebnyk, Chairman of the Executive Committee, CIS Executive Secretary, Sergey Lebedev.
Following the summit, the heads of state signed a statement on fighting international terrorism and the concept of military cooperation between CIS member states till 2020, a document on the formation of a border and other agencies for crisis management at the external border, a document on legal provision of the migration processes in the CIS, an agreement on the establishment and operation of a joint investigative team in the CIS, an agreement on the formation of the board of heads of penitentiary services of the CIS member states and an agreement on cooperation in prevention and response to emergencies.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that, in the current economic conditions, the CIS states must develop a package of measures on lowering the dependence of their national economies on foreign markets and to discuss ways to revive business ties.
"Today our countries are affected by a number of negative external factors – when going into this room, we were talking with some colleagues, including the President of Azerbaijan – these are the drop in the prices of some of our main export products, the uncertainty in the global economy, the rise of political tension in many regions," he said.
"The aggregate GDP of CIS countries decreased in the first quarter of 2015, as well as investment in capital stock. Trade turnover between our countries has also decreased. In this situation, it is important to think about a package of measures on lowering the dependence of our national economies on foreign markets and think about reviving business ties inside the Commonwealth," Putin said.
The President spoke about the need to work more actively on concluded agreements. "Russia is finishing the ratification of the Agreement on the CIS integrated currency market, which was signed in Ashgabat in December 2012 by Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan. The enforcement of the document will allow us to conduct coordinated currency policy, and in the future maybe even form a CIS common financial market," the Russian president stressed.
According to Vladimir Putin, Russia needs to coordinate efforts in the field of foreign policy. "We believe that all the CIS countries recognize the central role of the United Nations in solving international problems and security in the world," he said.
Putin said that Moscow has always warned about the growing danger of terrorism and added that the military operation in Syria has already brought good results. "Dozens of control centers and ammunition warehouses, and hundreds of terrorists and a large amount of military hardware have been destroyed. At the same time, we continue to stand for the creation of the widest possible coalition against extremists and terrorists," the president emphasized.
Putin also called for coordination in the fight against the terrorist threat. "As a first step, we urge all the CIS countries to join the data center in Baghdad. We are in talks with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and other countries, we are also trying to establish cooperation with the United States and Turkey," he said.
In addition, Putin highlighted the increased urgency of cooperation in combating international terrorism. "It is necessary to ensure the effective work of the Anti-terrorist Center of the CIS member states, to continue to coordinate the work of the security services, carry out continuous exchange of information," the leader concluded.
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said that the final documents of the summit of CIS leaders are practical and contribute to the deepening of cooperation between the CIS countries, including in the field of security. "The agenda of today's meeting includes 17 issues. A large section was dedicated to issues related to ensuring security, law and order. It is planned to sign a package of international agreements, approve the policy documents, as well as adopt the statement of CIS heads of state on fighting the international terrorism," News-Kazakhstan cited him as saying.
The President of the National Strategy Institute, Mikhail Remizov, told Vestnik Kavkaza that today the CIS countries are seeking to strengthen their relations on a bilateral basis for the joint fight against terrorism. "There are several axes in the CSTO today: Moscow-Minsk, Moscow-Yerevan, Moscow Central Asia. Each of these areas is independent and busy with its problems," he explained.
"Therefore, objectively the situation requires greater coordination between Russia and the Central Asian states. Our key ally among these states is Kazakhstan. At the same time, of course, military aid and cooperation with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan should continue and increase," Mikhail Remizov said.
The Director of the Analytical Center of the Institute of International Studies, Andrey Kazantsev, in his turn, said that the CIS is nothing more than a mechanism for the coordination of national positions, "which allows to somehow mitigate the existing conflict between the states and to avoid the threat of war if possible." "There are different kinds of disagreements on water and energy, on border issues and the CIS is a very convenient mechanism for the resolution of these conflicts," the expert stressed.
"First of all, today the CIS is to address the problems of the group of countries which are part of the EEU and CSTO, and a group of countries which are not included in these associations, for example, Uzbekistan. The most important thing here is to understand that the growth of threats observed in Afghanistan and the Central Asian direction, and the overall growth of terrorist threats, is enhanced by the overall instability in the former Soviet Union," Andrei Kazantsev concluded.