|Kazakhstan Considers Participation in EAPC and PfP Program a Priority |
Kazakhstan Considers Participation in EAPC and PfP Program a Priority
Statement by Colonel General M.K. Altynbayev, Minister of Defense of the Republic of Kazakhstan, at the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council in Defence Ministers session. Brussels, December 19, 2001.
Dear mister Chairman,
Dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen,
I thank you for the opportunity to share with you my opinion.
Tragic events of September 11, 2001 in the United States of America have once again demonstrated that international terrorism has no borders and represents a threat to all the world community.
Republic of Kazakhstan confirmed its resolve to fight against terrorism in all its facets. In his message to the U.S. President, Kazakhstan President N. Nazarbayev stated: "We feel indignation about terrorist acts that resulted in loss of numerous lives. AM civilized community must unite and take effective measures to fight international terrorism. All the Kazakhstan people sympathize with the American people in their grief and mourn over the tragedy".
We are sure that terrorists should be punished, so should be those who were behind them. In this connection the Republic of Kazakhstan confirmed its readiness to support with all forces and means available the measures which are being taken by international community in the struggle against terrorism.
NATO experts have considered the possibility of using our airfields by Alliance while carrying out a counterterrorist operation. We will take part in providing humanitarian assistance to Afgani people. At present, there are some other practical issues under consideration.
Before tragic September days and particularly after them, almost all states of the world pronounced for consolidation of efforts of international community in the fight against international terrorism.
However, in our opinion, in order to have close and effective interoperability, It is important to develop a maximally unified normative base acceptable to the majority of states and univocally defining key definitions, first of all, term "international terrorism". It is necessary to differentiate the notion of terrorism as criminal phenomenon, which is traditionally fought against by special services and law enforcement agencies, from absolutely new threat - international terrorism.
International terrorism, as an expression of political ambitions with large scale military actions, is particularly dangerous in both scale of consequences and its ideological influence on specific ethnic, confessional and other groups. Therefore, in order to fight international terrorism, regular or special forces units of Armed Forces are employed more frequently. This has already required that approaches to the military construction should be changed, particularly in our state.
Since 1999, Kazakhstan has been facing this new threat to national security. As you are aware, the events of the recent years in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekstan have led to reconsideration of our point of view on construction of the National Armed Forces. And the establishment of the Southern Military District, which protects the boundaries of the State located in the immediate vicinity of conflict centers has been an adequate reaction. The troops of the District comprise special forces units that are prepared for actions in mountain terrain and are being intensively trained in techniques of fighting against, terrorist groups.
There were organized Kazakhstani international cooperation in area of the fight against international terrorism such as; CIS cooperation, the Collective Security Treaty, Shanghai Organization of Cooperation. In Central Asia Collective Forces of Rapid Deployment were created.
Kazakhstan considers participation in EAPC and PfP program as one of priorities of cooperation aimed to integration into global security structures. Kazakhstan took political decision about joining the Planing and Review Process program (PARP) program which will allow us to increase the level of relations with NATO.
During last three years, a number of our officers has taken part in PfP activities, courses, seminars, symposiums, and conferences. Many of them have received training in PfP centers in Turkey and now they apply acquired knowledge in various spheres of military activity.
In spite of taking measures, the capabilities of Kazakhstan to counteract the above mentioned threats due to the complexity of transition period are limited, and we will welcome any initiative to provide concrete assistance to our Armed Forces.
In conclusion, I would like to express hope that joint realization of priority directions of cooperation between Kazakhstan and NATO will contribute to the enhancement of the level of both regional and international security.
Availing myself of the occasion, I would like to congratulate all of you on coming Christmas and New Year 2002 holidays.
Thank you for your attention.