- It is an intergovernmental military alliance of six countries that came into effect in 2002.
- The headquarters is located in the Russian capital of Moscow.
- Its objectives are to
- strengthen peace,
- international and regional security, including cybersecurity,
- safeguarding member states’ independence, territorial integrity, and sovereignty.
Current CSTO members are – Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Russian Federation, and Tajikistan.
What does membership mean?
- CSTO membership means that member nations are barred from joining other military alliances, for example, NATO.
- Most importantly, membership presumes certain key security assurances – the most significant of which deter third countries’ military aggression.
- In the CSTO, aggression against one signatory is perceived as aggression against all.
- It, however, remains unclear whether this feature works in practice.