14:31 GMT +316 February 2019
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    Polish and US soldiers look at a missile defense battery during joint exercises.

    CSTO Stands Against Build-Up of Missile Defense as Jeopardizing the World

    © AP Photo / Czarek Sokolowski
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    The heads of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Russia issued a joint statement advocating for the prevention of a new arms race.

    DUSHANBE (Sputnik) — The unilateral enhancement of missile defense systems by states could potentially threat international security and stability, the leaders of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) member states said in a joint statement on Tuesday.

    "We, the heads of the CSTO member states, actively advocate for the prevention of an arms race. And we believe that the unilateral and unlimited build-up of missile defense systems by individual states or groups of states could damage international security and destabilize the situation in the world."

    The CSTO members comprise Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Russia. Leaders and senior officials from these countries attended a CSTO summit in the Tajik Capital of Dushanbe on Tuesday.

    Russia has repeatedly expressed concern over the creation of an US-designed ballistic missile defense system in Europe, approved during a NATO summit in 2010.

    A group of European countries, including Poland, Romania, Spain and Turkey, agreed to deploy elements of the system on their soil.

    NATO continues to claim the ballistic missile defense systems are aimed primarily at countering threats from Iran and North Korea.


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    security, missile defense, Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), Kazakhstan, Armenia, Russia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus