MOSCOW, January 14. /TASS/. There were no open clashes between the peacekeepers of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a Russia-led post-Soviet security bloc, with armed bandits or terrorists during the peacekeeping operation in Kazakhstan, CSTO Secretary General Stanislav Zas said in an interview with RT, a fragment of which was posted on its website on Friday.
"During the days of the peacekeeping operation, there were no open clashes with armed bandits or terrorists at those facilities that were protected by the peacekeepers," he said, adding that people accepted the presence of the peacekeepers with understanding.
"People accepted the deployment of our peacekeeping contingent to this country with understanding. They must have understood that they had arrived to help them in this difficult situation. So, they showed the corresponding attitude to the peacekeepers," Zas said.
In line with a resolution of the CSTO Collective Security Council of January 6, 2022, CSTO Collective Peacekeeping Forces were deployed to Kazakhstan for a limited period of time to help stabilize and normalize the situation in that country. The contingent included units from Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. The peacekeepers were tasked to ensure the protection of vital strategic facilities near Almaty.
The withdrawal of the contingent from Kazakhstan began on January 13. According to the Russian defense ministry, the first Russian peacekeepers returned to Russia from Kazakhstan by four Il-76MD planes on Thursday.