Saturday, March 30, 2024

Kazakhstan Conducts Major Naval Exercise in Northern Caspian Near Russia’s Border

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Mar. 26 –Kazakhstan which now has more ships on the Caspian than any other littoral state including Russia ( has just carried out a major training exercise with that Central Asian country’s coast guard and military aviation.

            While most of Kazakhstan’s ships are smaller than those of Russia’s Caspian Flotilla, its largest ones – including missile carriers, mine sweepers and anti-sabotage vessels – all took part in the 1,000-man exercise, highlighting Astana’s readiness to repulse not just poachers but other states ( and

            This action highlights just how far and how fast Kazakhstan has built a navy capable not only of coastal defense but also prepared to defend its sea lanes there against any other state, including Russia’s. (For background, see, and

            Moscow is certain to be nervous about this because Astana is currently in the midst of an effort to build a regional security system involving Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, an arrangement that could make it more difficult for Russia to intervene in the region as it did most recently in Kazakhstan in 2022 under the aegis of Collective Security Treaty Organization. (On those efforts, see

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