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    Factbox: Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO)

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    * Founded on October 7, 2002 by Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan

    * Evolved from the CIS Collective Security Treaty, which was signed in 1992 and came into force in 1994. Moldova and Ukraine were observers. Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Uzbekistan withdrew in 1999

    * Registered with the UN in 2003

    * Main objectives: ensuring peace, preserving the territorial integrity of member countries, coordinating activities in the fight against international terrorism, drug trafficking, and organized international crime, and providing immediate military assistance to a CSTO member in the event of a military threat.

    * Some experts say the CSTO was created to prevent NATO's further eastward expansion and keep some CIS countries under Russia's military protection

    * Has a Collective Rapid Reaction Force with 1,500 military personnel deployed in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. Continues to create military groups and supply them with munitions

    * Nikolai Bordyuzha is CSTO secretary-general

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