May 10, 2012:
Russia has agreed to set up maintenance centers in Kazakhstan to help maintain Kazakh warplanes, armored vehicles, and other military equipment. Kazakhstan used to be part of the Soviet Union, and most of its military equipment is of Cold War era stuff from the 1980s, or earlier. Kazakhstan has over 150 modern combat aircraft, over a thousand armored vehicles, and several hundred anti-aircraft radars, launchers, and missiles that desperately need some attention.
Since Kazakhstan became independent in the early 1990s, many of the technicians capable of properly maintaining the high tech gear have either left for better paying jobs or left the country (especially if they were ethnic Russians). As a result, jet fighters and armored vehicles became increasingly inoperable. The new Russian maintenance centers, staffed largely with Russian technicians, will reverse this. The Russians will also train more Kazakh technicians, although the Kazakhstan government will have to come up with enough cash to pay these guys what they are worth.
Russia is using this program to gain more control over Kazakhstan and to maintain another market for new Russian weapons.