Cen­tral Asia is a Re­gion of Com­plex Plexus of In­ter­ests

The se­cu­rity of the Cen­tral Asian re­gion has been ad­dressed in Moscow at a round­table dis­cus­sion with the par­tic­i­pa­tion of Uzbek and Rus­sian an­a­lysts.

Uzbekistan Today (English) - - WORLD -

As a re­sult of the con­fer­ence, an agree­ment was reached on the par­tic­i­pa­tion of RISS ex­perts in aca­demic and prac­ti­cal events in Uzbek­istan.

The for­mat of the event was an aca­demic con­fer­ence, ad­dress­ing the topic “Press­ing is­sues of se­cu­rity in the Cen­tral Asian re­gion and the strat­egy for their so­lu­tion: the ap­proaches of Rus­sia and Uzbek­istan”. The Uzbek del­e­ga­tion was headed by Vladimir Norov, Di­rec­tor of the In­sti­tute of Strate­gic and In­ter­re­gional Stud­ies (ISIRS) un­der the Pres­i­dent of the Repub­lic of Uzbek­istan. The Rus­sian side was rep­re­sented by Mikhail Frad­kov, Di­rec­tor of the Rus­sian In­sti­tute for Strate­gic Stud­ies (RISS).

Open­ing the meet­ing, he noted that “Uzbek­istan is the heart of Cen­tral Asia and has com­mon borders with ev­ery coun­try in the re­gion where Rus­sia has in­ter­ests. We are plan­ning to raise the level of Rus­sian-Uzbek re­la­tions to a higher level. Our de­sire is to en­sure sta­bil­ity and de­velop in the in­ter­ests of our peo­ples in the con­di­tions of se­cu­rity.”

In the opin­ion of the Am­bas­sador Ex­tra­or­di­nary and Plenipo­ten­tiary of Uzbek­istan to the Rus­sian Fed­er­a­tion, Bakhrom Ashrafkhanov, the im­por­tance of the topic of the con­fer­ence is con­di­tioned by the fact that Cen­tral Asia is not an iso­lated ter­ri­tory. “This is a re­gion of a com­plex plexus of po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic in­ter­ests, al­most all global fac­tors and the sit­u­a­tion in which can some­how in­flu­ence the sit­u­a­tion far be­yond its borders,» said the head of the diplo­matic mis­sion.”

The fact that Cen­tral Asia is the main pri­or­ity of the for­eign pol­icy of the Repub­lic of Uzbek­istan, and the main task fac­ing the coun­try is the cre­ation of a zone of sta­bil­ity, peace and good-neigh­bor­li­ness around it­self, re­called the ISIRS Di­rec­tor Vladimir Norov. Con­cern­ing se­cu­rity, all par­tic­i­pants in the con­fer­ence agreed that Uzbek­istan is a pow­er­ful bar­rier to ex­trem­ism.

“Uzbek­istan has ac­cu­mu­lated quite a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing with young peo­ple, the clergy,” stated Ok­sana Petro­vskaya, head of the Cen­ter for Euro­pean Stud­ies at RISS, “and our task is to unite ef­forts in coun­ter­ing ex­trem­ism.”

V. Norov: In 2017, the Cen­ter for the Study of Pub­lic Opin­ion con­ducted a study, ac­cord­ing to which 72% of Uzbeks re­sponded that Rus­sia should be the main part­ner of Uzbek­istan in the fight against re­li­gious ex­trem­ism and ter­ror­ism.

Dur­ing the con­fer­ence, the sides ex­changed views on the sit­u­a­tion in Afghanistan and its im­pact on the de­vel­op­ment of the re­gional sit­u­a­tion. In this re­gard, it was sug­gested that Rus­sia and Uzbek­istan should unite in the Afghan di­rec­tion in or­der to help sta­bi­lize the sit­u­a­tion. De­vel­op­ing this topic, Omar Mo­ham­mad Nes­sar, Di­rec­tor of the Cen­ter for the Study of Con­tem­po­rary Afghanistan, said: “Of course, Rus­sia can es­tab­lish re­la­tions with Uzbek­istan and play an ef­fec­tive role in sta­bi­liz­ing the sit­u­a­tion in Afghanistan, but from my point of view, it would prob­a­bly be more in­ter­est­ing and more cor­rect to ex­pand this al­liance , in­clud­ing not only Uzbek­istan, but other coun­tries of Cen­tral Asia, China and Iran, as th­ese states also play an im­por­tant role in Afghanistan.”

Par­tic­i­pants noted the spirit of trust present at the con­fer­ence. At the end of the meet­ing, Di­rec­tor of the Cen­ter for Cen­tral Asian and Afghan Stud­ies at MGIMO An­drey Kazant­sev said: “To­day we had a very in­ter­est­ing meet­ing with rep­re­sen­ta­tives of ISIRS. One of the ar­eas dis­cussed, which is of great in­ter­est, is how we can co­or­di­nate the in­ter­ests of the great pow­ers work­ing in the re­gion. It's no se­cret that the Rus­sian-Amer­i­can and Amer­i­canChi­nese con­tra­dic­tions are now quite large, which pre­vent them from ef­fec­tively co­op­er­at­ing with the coun­tries of the re­gion and with each other in Cen­tral Asia. In this con­text, it is im­por­tant to de­ter­mine how this can all be co­or­di­nated with the in­ter­ests of the Cen­tral Asian states them­selves, as well as how the coun­tries of the re­gion, pri­mar­ily Uzbek­istan, in­creas­ing their au­thor­ity in diplo­macy and the sys­tem of in­ter­na­tional re­la­tions, will be able to build co­op­er­a­tion to pre­vent the neg­a­tive im­pact of in­ter­na­tional con­flicts on the sit­u­a­tion in Cen­tral Asia. And for this en­hanced co­or­di­na­tion to re­solve the sit­u­a­tion in Afghanistan, as well.”

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