14 Feb 2019 14:02

Belarus demands accelerated appointment of its representative as CSTO secretary general

MINSK. Feb 14 (Interfax) - The Belarusian Foreign Ministry has said that the appointment of Svyatoslav Zas as the secretary general of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) needs to be accelerated.

"The CSTO has been working without a secretary general for a long time. This situation is bad for the organization and requires resolution as quickly as possible," ministry spokesman Anatoly Glaz said at a press briefing in Minsk on Thursday.

The chiefs of CSTO member states backed the Belarusian candidate at their meetings in Astana and St. Petersburg, Glaz said.

"In December of last year, the CSTO Secretariat, under commission of the president of Kyrgyzstan as chair of the Collective Security Council, drafted an order appointing Stanislav Zas as secretary general. Soon after that, he met with the heads of state in five capitals, and all the presidents supported his nomination," Glaz said.

In light of the parliamentary election in Armenia in December 2018, "we understand that the Armenian prime minister was too busy to meet with the Belarusian candidate," he said.

"We are expecting Armenia to set a possible date for this meeting in the near future," Glaz said, noting that Belarus planned to develop constructive cooperation with Yerevan.

"Hopefully, we will reach a mutual understanding [with Armenia]. After all, the position of the secretary general of the international military-political organization is not a hotel room that you can book even if there is no chance of using it again," Glaz said.

Belarus is working on the approval of Zas' nomination by consensus, Glaz said. "We do not want this technical detail to affect the CSTO's activity and bilateral relations," he said.