TASHKENT TO HOST HIGH-LEVEL INERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON REGIONAL COOPERATION OF CENTRAL ASIAN STATES IN THE FIGHT AGAINST TERRORISM
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On March 3-4, 2022, a high-level international conference on the topic: “Regional cooperation of Central Asian countries within the framework of the Joint Action Plan for the Implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy”, will be hosted in Tashkent.
The landmark event, supported by international community, will become the practical implementation of the initiative of the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, put forward at the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, and will make a significant contribution to consolidating the efforts of the countries of the region and the international community in the implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy (UN GCTS) in Central Asia.
The conference is co-organized by the Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan (ISRS), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT), the UN Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA) and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).
The Tashkent Conference will be held in a hybrid format with more than 600 senior officials and leading experts from national and foreign think tanks in the EU, Central and South Asia, China, Russia, USA, Middle East and other countries, representatives of international and regional organizations and civil society institutions.
Among the invitees are the participants of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Compact for the implementation of counter-terrorism measures, special representatives of Member States as well as donor states of counter-terrorism activities.
At the opening ceremony, an address is expected on behalf of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Mr. Shavkat Mirziyoyev and a video message from the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. António Guterres. Other speakers include OSCE Secretary General Helga Maria Schmid, UN Under-Secretary-General for Counter-Terrorism Mr. Vladimir Voronkov, Special Representative of the Secretary General for Central Asia and Head of the UN Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA), Ms. Natalia German, Shanghai Coorperation Organization (SCO) Secretary General Zhang Mina, heads of delegations of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The Republic of Uzbekistan will be represented by members of government, heads of chambers and committees of the Oliy Majlis, specialists from ministries, departments and non-governmental organizations and leading researchers from think tanks and universities.
The 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Joint Plan of Action for Central Asia (JPOA) would provide an opportunity to learn about the unique experience of implementing the UN GCTS in this region, as well as to endorse a new edition of the regional JPOA, prepared on the basis of a ten-year review, multi-stakeholder consultations and consensus.
Within the framework of the conference, in the form of panel discussions, four breakout sessions will be held on each of the four pillars of the GCTS. These include (i) addressing the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism; (ii) Preventing and countering terrorism; (iii) building states’ capacity to prevent and combat terrorism and to strengthen the role of the United Nations system in that regard and (iv) ensuring respect for human rights for all and the rule of law as the fundamental basis for the fight against terrorism.
Three side events will be held on the margins of the Conference: 1) the role of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) in strengthening cooperation between the states of Central Asia within the framework of the JPoA, 2) the implementation of the UN GCTS, gender aspects in the work with women and children returning from war zones, 3) financial support for programs to counter terrorism. These side events will be organized by SCO RATS, OSCE, UNOCT and their partners.
The key documents following the outcome of the international meeting should be the Tashkent Declaration and updated Joint Plan of Action, in which the countries of Central Asia will reaffirm their commitment to the joint fight against terrorism, which poses a serious threat to international peace and security, define specific tasks for the near future.
The provisions of the Tashkent Declaration and the new Joint Plan of Action will become consistent and a logical continuation of previously adopted documents - the Ashgabat Declaration (2011), the Ashgabat Declaration on Countering Terrorism (2017), and the Dushanbe Declaration on the results of the high level international conference “International and regional cooperation against terrorism and its sources of financing, including drug trafficking and organized crime” (2019).