Central Asian Countries and Azerbaijan Begin Military Exercises in Kazakhstan

photo: Kazakh Ministry of Defense

On July 8, Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Defense announced the start of joint military exercises – ‘Birlestik-2024’ (Association-2024) – by Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan in the country’s Mangystau region.

Until July 17, the states’ military contingents will be modelling and practicing a joint operation to localize an armed conflict in manoeuvres at both the Oimasha training ground and a Caspian Sea site two kilometers from Cape Tokmak.

Some four thousand military personnel and up to 700 pieces of military equipment will be involved in the exercise. Tactical episodes will be played out with the participation of ground and air reconnaissance groups, naval special forces, army and front-line aviation crews, warships and boats, artillery crews, assault and tank units.

In recent years, there has been talk about increasing military cooperation between Turkic-speaking countries.

In November 2023, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev called on leaders of Turkic states to strengthen defense cooperation and at a summit of the Organization of Turkic States (OTS) in Astana, Kazakhstan, stated: “Wars and bloody conflicts break out. In this case, the main guarantor of security, first of all, becomes the defense potential. I believe that cooperation between the member states in areas such as security, defense, and the defense industry should be further increased.”

Member countries of the OTS, established in 2009, include Turkey, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan, while Hungary, Turkmenistan, and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus have observer status.

Sergey Kwan

Sergey Kwan

Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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