Just recently many European mass media presented Kazakh program “The way to Europe”, developed in accordance with the Letter of Kazakhstan President “Improvement of the well-being of Kazakhstan people – is the main objective of the state policy”. In respect with the Concept of the Republic of Kazakhstan foreign policy, the development of comprehensive cooperation with European countries is a strategic interest of Kazakhstan. We intend to integrate into the process of European cooperation and development, to use to the maximum the potential of technologic, energy, trade and transport cooperation.
EU CENTRAL ASIA STRATEGY
How does the dialogue between the EU and Central Asia progress on environment and water issues? Is the EU happy with the progress of the process so far, what has been achieved, what else needs to be done, are all Central Asian countries equally cooperative?
Latest achievements of Russian within Central Asia are so significant, that should be widely discussed. This has been the greatest absurdity of Russian diplomacy since its assistance to American colleagues to change the political regime in Georgia, leading Mihail Saakashvili. Just in a month Russia lost its positions in Uzbekistan and Tajikistan that had been gained in recent years due to support, including financial support of these regimes. Instead, Moscow has gained ephemeral victory in Kirgizia in the issue of American military base withdrawal. Thus total Russian influence will remain only in the poorest Central Asian Republic, despite the Kremlin had other plans. Of course, there is Kazakhstan left and the relations in this sphere are firm – but this is not a merit of Russian policymakers, but of the president Nursultan Nazarbaev, who has developed and followed strict international policy course.
Recent legislation to tackle religious extremism in Kyrgystan is a pretext for targetting Evangelicals and religious minorities. State propaganda has created popular hostility towards non-Muslims. Tackling this situation requires inclusive rhetoric from local leaders and the curbing of anti-westernism.
Legal amendments bolstering the power of the Turkmen parliament went into effect January 13 after being published in the government-run newspaper, Neutralny Turkmenistan.
First Vice-President of the European Parliament Rodi Kratsa-Tsagaropoulou speaks to New Europe.
In the middle of December Moscow became the stage of another discussions of a topical issue – accomplishment of the program “Kazakhstan way to Europe”.
Comments of Moscow experts on Kazakh program of cooperation with EU can be reviewed in two perspectives: on the one hand it is an attempt to explain why Kazakhstan moves to Europe instead of more conventional way in “Eurasian direction”. The second objective is to illustrate that presidential program has much more deeper and fundamental basis other than simple presidency in OSCE.
The EU and Central Asia: Strategy for a New Partnership
I. Introduction: Th e EU and Central Asia
Central Asia has a centuries-old tradition of bringing Europe and Asia together. It lies at a strategically important intersection between the two continents. The Central Asian States of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan have known considerable evolution in political and economic transformation since attaining independence. They have established statehood, safeguarded multi-ethnic understanding and inter-religious communication. By joining the OSCE, they subscribed to the Organization’s values, standards and commitments. By signing the United Nations Millennium Declaration they set themselves ambitious goals.
At the beginning of the 21st century, the time has come for a new partnership between the EU and Central Asian States in a globalised world.