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    KYRGHIZ PRIME MINISTER ON SIGNIFICANCE OF RUSSIAN AIRBASE IN KANT

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    MOSCOW, January 19. (RIA Novosti correspondent Petr Goncharov) - Kyrghyz Prime Minister Nikolai Tanayev believes that the Russian airbase in Kant (30 km east of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan's capital) is a vital element in providing security in Central Asian member countries of the Treaty on the Collective Security (TCS: Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan).

    Having experienced world-terrorist activities in 1999-2000, Kyrgyzstan "took and takes an active part in all practical initiatives designed to resist this common threat to the society," Mr. Tanayev told RIA Novosti.

    "As of today this airbase operates at full capacity. The decision to station a Russian airbase in Kant was made as a vital element of external security provision not only in Kyrgyzstan but also in other TCS member countries in Central Asia. There is also an air support component of the Collective Forces within the framework of the TCS," noted Mr. Tanayev.

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