International Relations/Diplomacy
Central Asia
VIF Delegation Visit to Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan held a nationwide referendum on constitutional reforms on April 30, 2023. A delegation from Vivekananda international Foundation (VIF) which included Dr Arvind Gupta, Director, VIF and Dr Pravesh Kumar Gupta, Associate Fellow (Central Asia), were invited by the Central Election Commission of the republic of Uzbekistan to monitor the referendum process as an international observer.

Revitalization of INSTC and Prospects of the Greater Eurasian Connectivity

The geostrategic significance of Central Asia is very much important from India’s foreign policy and domestic policy points of view. Central Asia shares a border with China in the East, Caspian in the West, Russia in the North, and Iran and Afghanistan in the south. Its geostrategic location makes it vulnerable to the geopolitical power play. In order to balance major powers, Central Asian republics adopted a multi-vector foreign policy in the post-Soviet period. They welcomed China to balance the Russian and Western influence.

Discussion on Shanghai Cooperation Organization: Achievements and Prospects

Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF), organized a Round Table Discussion on “Shanghai Cooperation Organization: Achievements and Prospects” on September 5, 2022. Dr. Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, delivered the welcome remarks, followed by remarks of Amb DB Venkatesh Varma, Distinguished Fellow VIF. The other participants of the discussion included Amb D. P. Srivastava, Amb Ashok Kantha, Lt. Gen Ravi Sawhney. Amb. Ashok Sajjanhar, Amb. Skand R. Tayal, Amb. PS Raghavan and Amb TCA Raghavan.

The Spectre of Afghanistan: Security in Central Asia by Kirill Nourzhanov and Amin Saikal; London, I.B.TAURIS Bloomsbury Publishing Plc., 2021, pp. 249.

Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan are three Central Asian countries that share geographical boundaries and cross-border ethnic linkages with Afghanistan. As a result, the developments in Afghanistan have directly impacted these countries. Although the majority of the population in Central Asia is Muslim, they have quite varied religious perspectives due to the long shadow cast by the Soviet Union’s communist regime. On the other hand, the Taliban administration in Kabul in the 1990s intended to establish an Islamic caliphate, which was unacceptable to its Central Asian neighbours.

Interaction with Dr. Eldor Aripov, Director, Institute of Strategic and Regional Studies (ISRS), Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) hosted Dr. Eldor Aripov, Director, Institute of Strategic and Regional Studies (ISRS), Tashkent, Uzbekistan. Dr. Aripov was accompanied by H.E. Mr. Dilshod Akhatov, Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan to India and Mr. Azamjon Mansurov, First Secretary, Uzbek Embassy to India. The VIF’s panel of speakers included Amb D. P. Srivastava, Amb. Ashok Sajjanhar, Amb Skand R Tayal, Amb. Vinod Kumar, Lt. Gen Ravi Sawhney, Brig. Vinod Anand, and Dr. Pravesh Kumar Gupta. Dr.

Turkey’s Role as a Regional Actor in Central Asia: An Assessment

Central Asia’s geostrategic location at the crossroads of East and West has shaped substantial geopolitical rivalries in the region. Even though the region is within Russia’s sphere of influence, China has made significant advances in Central Asia after the fall of the Soviet Union due to the Central Asian republics’ multi-vector foreign policy. Turkey has a considerable interest in this geopolitically crucial region for two primary reasons.

India-Central Asia: Defence and Security Cooperation

Central Asia has emerged as an important geopolitical space after the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991. Its geostrategic location at the crossroads of East and West, South, Central, and West Asia has often resulted in the spread of challenges beyond the region’s immediate borders. Three Central Asian Republics, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, share a 2,500 kilometre long and porous border with Afghanistan, making the region exposed to the unfolding crisis in Kabul.

Talk on ‘India-Uzbekistan Relations and the Regional Dynamics’ by Amb. Manish Prabhat, Indian Ambassador to Uzbekistan

Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF) organised a virtual interaction with Mr. Manish Prabhat, Ambassador of India to Uzbekistan, on ‘India-Uzbekistan Relations and the regional dynamics’ on October 4, 2021, to discuss the current status of Indo-Uzbek relations and regional security and strategic dimensions. Dr. Arvind Gupta, Director VIF, delivered the opening remarks. Amb Amar Sinha, Amb. P. S.

A Report on Visit to Uzbekistan as International Election Observer and Discussions with Uzbek Think Tanks

Uzbekistan held its Sixth Presidential Elections on October 24, 2021, where the author had participated as an International Observer from India. During the visit to Uzbekistan, one also had an opportunity to have a discussion with Uzbek Think Tanks, which are partner institutions of Vivekananda International Foundation (VIF). Given below is the report on salient points of discussions with Uzbek Think Tanks on India-Uzbekistan bilateral relations, SCO, connectivity, Afghanistan, and India-Central Asia historical relations. I. Presidential Elections

Uzbekistan-India: Exploring New Horizons of Strategic Partnership

The VIF, in collaboration with the Embassy of Republic of Uzbekistan in India organised a virtual webinar on Uzbekistan-India: Exploring New Horizons of Strategic Partnership on 18 October.

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