December 2015

Central Asian Republics Welcome New US Approach Toward Region

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By Alexander Kim

On November 1, the city of Samarkand, Uzbekistan, hosted the foreign ministers of the five Central Asian republics, who met together with US Secretary of State John Kerry in the newly introduced C5+1 format (Rpg15.wordpress.com, November 1). Initiated by Washington, the C5+1 format has several important features: it engages only the five post-Soviet Central Asian countries (without Afghanistan, as the US-proposed New Silk Road initiative had stipulated, for example) along with the United States, and it seeks to promote better regional cooperation by offering Central Asia something it had always wanted from the US, namely greater economic assistance. In fact, the promised US assistance to Central Asia will focus heavily on professional, trade and business development (State.gov, November 1), and will aim to support younger and entrepreneurial populations across Central Asia.

The UN climate summit and its background

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By Cemil Ertem

This week's United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris certainly does not inform us about the climate problems facing the world. Instead, world leaders will address a number of major topical issues from the economic crisis to global terror. Actually, all the topics being discussed have a common ground - industrialized countries still impose their own interests on other countries in a number of topics including economic policies, as well as the sharing and use of energy resources, and put forward proposals for problems in accordance with those interests.

NATO must be ready to respond to threats irrespective of their source, Linkevičius says

 NATO must be ready to effectively respond to threats irrespective of their source, says Lithuania's Linas Linkevičius at a meeting of foreign affairs ministers of NATO countries. The meeting of ministers in Brussels addressed threats to the Alliance's security arising from conflicts in North Africa and the Middle East as well as challenges related to the intensifying military activity of Russia.