DUSHANBE, August 17, Asia-Plus - The leaders of five member nations of Eurasian Economic Community (EAEC) have approved Uzbekistan’s membership of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO).

Russian president’s official website says an appropriate document on this subject was signed yesterday.  

Russian President Vladimir Putin telling the EAEC informal meeting said EAEC should step up cooperation with the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which comprises the same countries plus Armenia.  And the EAEC leaders considered and approved restoring Uzbekistan''s membership in this regional security group.

Uzbekistan withdrew from the CSTO, which is seen by many as a counterbalance to growing NATO influence in the region, in 1999 along with Azerbaijan and Georgia.  Uzbekistan made a decision to suspend active activity within the CSTO but did not denunciate the Collective Security Treaty signed in May 1992.     

The CSTO was founded on October 7, 2002 by Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan to ensure peace, preserve the territorial integrity of member countries, coordinate activities in the fight against international terrorism, drug trafficking, and organized international crime, and provide immediate military assistance to a CSTO member in the event of a military threat.