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Global Insights: Uzbekistan's CSTO Withdrawal Highlights Russia's Dilemma

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Uzbekistan’s decision to withdraw from the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) highlights the dilemma confronting Russian President Vladimir Putin as he tries to strengthen Moscow’s pre-eminence among the former Soviet republics through the region’s multiple multilateral institutions.

The CSTO and other Moscow-led regional organizations have important symbolic value to Russia regardless of their actual effectiveness, because they affirm Moscow’s strategic primacy in the former Soviet space. The other member states accept this arrangement since it can yield some tangible benefits, such as economic and military assistance, as long as it does not overly constrain their freedom of action. ...

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