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Russia-Led CSTO To Hold Military Exercises Near Afghan Border On October 22-23

Kyrgyz tanks roll during CSTO military exercises at the Edelweiss training ground in Kyrgyzstan on September 9.

The Russia-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) will hold joint military drills near the Afghan border in Tajikistan between October 22 and 23, the Kremlin said on October 13.

Besides Tajikistan, which has a lengthy border with Afghanistan, the CSTO includes Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Armenia, and Belarus.

The CSTO held three days of military exercises in Kyrgyzstan last month.

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the drills are taking place amid growing concern in the region about the situation in Afghanistan.

"These exercises are crucial," Peskov told reporters on October 13.

"The CSTO presidents met just recently to stress their concern over the way the situation in Afghanistan has been developing. They emphasized the unpredictability of this situation and the need for the CSTO to be on guard," Peskov said.

CSTO spokesman Vladimir Zainetdinov said in late August that another round of military exercises is scheduled to take place in the region next month.

Based on reporting by Reuters and TASS