The CSTO’s terrorism perspective

A senior Russian military general said that the CSTO perceives Afghanistan’s north as a threat to its member states and the military committee of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) is voting to curb the threat of terrorism from Afghanistan.

According to him, there is no overarching problem regarding military security or military danger coming from the territory of Afghanistan, yet the forum realizes that the current leadership of Afghanistan does not yet fully have the situation in the country under control, including in the northern areas that border CSTO member states.

Meanwhile, the Islamic Emirate rejected this claim and declared that northern Afghanistan is one of the safe parts of the country and Afghanistan’s soil is not a threat to any country.

After Pakistan’s calls for curbing militancy and removing terror safe havens from neighbouring nation, the regional states and global community consistently echoed its concerns regarding the security risks animating out of Afghanistan. 

Historically, the regional states had already been anxious about the future geostrategic dimensions after the Islamic Emirate refused political inclusiveness and carried forward its jihadist legacy instead of transforming into a nation-state.

The global community is of the view that Numerous transnational terrorist groups are amassed in the country and the incumbent Afghan government lacks the capacity/ will either to defeat determined IS-K or push other terrorist groups including the TTP out of their country.

Interestingly, the Afghan interim government currently downplays the risk of terrorism and declares that the entire geography of the country is under the administration of the Islamic Emirate and denies the presence of any transnational terrorist groups on its soil. In fact, the reality can’t change through unreal assertions and doubtful claims in this era of hybrid media and technological excellence. Meanwhile, the military strength, Intelligence and Counterterrorism capabilities of the Afghan government are not hidden from the rest of the world.

The CSTO’s perspective regarding terrorism risk in Northern Afghanistan and the bloc strategy to tackle that threat has serious political, security and economic repercussions for Afghanistan which is facing similar challenges on its borders with Pakistan and Iran.

Historically, terrorism is a shared risk and it merits a collective response and teamwork. It is of utmost importance that the regional nations use the SEO platform to effectively tackle this issue, so peace flourishes and good neighbourliness triumphs in the region.