CIS chief warns of impending crisis in Central Asia, Middle East

CIS chief warns of impending crisis in Central Asia, Middle East

PanARMENIAN.Net - The armed forces of the member-states of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) must be ready to face a potential escalation of tension in Central Asia and Middle East, CIS Executive Secretary Sergei Lebedev said on Wednesday, June 5, according to RIA Novosti.

“There are serious risks and threats associated with the escalation of the situation around Syria and Iran,” Lebedev said at a meeting of CIS defense ministers in the Belarusian capital, Minsk.

“The potential for conflict in Afghanistan remains high and the future situation in the country after the withdrawal of coalition troops is largely unclear,” he said.

“Unfortunately, there is a growing potential for future threats to Central Asian countries, and we must be prepared for this in advance,” Lebedev added.

The CIS, a loose organization of former Soviet republics, includes Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Ukraine.

The CIS defense ministers agreed at the Minsk meeting to continue efforts to further integrate their respective military structures, including a joint air defense network, in order to strengthen their defenses against emerging threats in Central Asia.

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