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    YEREVAN, May 21 (RIA Novosti) - On Friday, the session of the CIS Council of Defence Ministers opened in Yerevan, Armenia.

    "Military and military-technological co-operation within the CIS is an important element of integration processes," Armenian Defence Minister Serzh Sarkisyan said at the opening ceremony.

    "Our co-operation is an important condition of the countries' social and economic development," he added.

    He stressed how traditional military co-operation between the CIS countries was. "In the past decades, it has been developing on a good and equal basis," stressed Sarkisyan.

    The Council of Defence Ministers plans to consider over 20 issues related to CIS military integration. They include the common air defence system, the single communications system, and co-ordination of positions on nuclear non-proliferation.

    The CIS Council of Defence Ministers is a body of the CIS Council of Heads of State in charge of military politics and military development. It was formed on the decision of the CIS Council of Heads of State in 1992. The CIS Council of Defence Ministers includes nine CIS nations, whose heads signed documents to the effect in 1994. They are Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Moldova, Turkmenistan and Ukraine participate in the council's sessions as observers.

    Participating in the Yerevan session chaired by Russian Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov are defence ministers of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, and the first deputy Defence Minister of Georgia. Besides, Moldovan defence minister and representatives of Ukraine and Uzbekistan are attending the session as observers.

    The Collective Security Treaty, which was signed by Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan in 1992, is military integration of a higher level. In 2002, the Treaty was transformed into the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, which had the status of an international regional organisation.

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