Tajikistan invites Russia to Central Asia water conference in Dushanbe in June

DUSHANBE (TCA) — Tajikistan’s foreign minister says Dushanbe is expecting a Russian delegation to attend an international conference on water resources in Central Asia that his country will host in June.

Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojidin Aslov made the comment on April 9 in Moscow, where he met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, RFE/RL reported.

Access to water has been a source of tension among the five former Soviet republics in Central Asia — Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

The meeting in Dushanbe is scheduled for June 20-22.

Aslov also said that his country expected Russian support in setting up an antidrug hub in Tajikistan under the auspices of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a security grouping that comprises China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

“We discussed our friends’ initiatives such as convening a high-level conference in June dedicated to the International Decade for Action on Water for Sustainable Development (2018-2028). The High-Level International Conference Counteracting Terrorism and Radicalism is the second event to be held in Dushanbe in May. At both these events, Russia will be represented at a high level,” Lavrov said.

Lavrov also said that the 15th meeting of the Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation between Russia and Tajikistan, which is scheduled to be held in Moscow soon, “will give an additional impetus to our cooperation in the economy, trade and investment. We have agreed to further improve the operating conditions for Russian and Tajik companies in our markets”.

The Russian foreign minister also reaffirmed Moscow’s willingness to continue to assist “Tajik friends in upgrading and re-equipping their armed forces, and building up their capacity to protect the state border”.

Sergey Kwan

TCA

Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
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Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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