Situation in Afghanistan and impact on Central Asia in focus at meeting with OSCE PA delegations and OSCE field offices from region

CA meeting Margareta CederfeltMargareta Cederfelt chairing the meeting on 25 August 2021.COPENHAGEN, 25 August 2021 – With an aim to learning about the expected impact of developments in Afghanistan on neighbouring Central Asian countries and finding out how the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly can contribute to addressing concerns and meeting challenges, PA President Margareta Cederfelt (Sweden) convened an online meeting today with the heads of OSCE PA delegations and representatives of OSCE field offices in the region, as well as other relevant actors such as the OSCE Conflict Prevention Centre.

President Cederfelt was joined by Saidmurod Fattohzoda, Head of the Delegation of Tajikistan to the OSCE PA, and Sadik Safoev, Head of the Delegation of Uzbekistan to the OSCE PA, for discussions that focused on the security and humanitarian situation related to the withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan and the Taliban’s takeover.

Also participating in the meeting were OSCE PA Special Representative on Central Asia and Vice-President Pia Kauma (Finland), Special Representative on Sustainable Development Goals and Vice-President Askar Shakirov (Kazakhstan), and OSCE PA Secretary General Roberto Montella. They were joined by representatives of the OSCE Programme Office in Dushanbe, the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat and the OSCE Project Co-ordinator in Uzbekistan.

Talks focused on border security, possible refugee flows, radicalization, transnational crime, and human rights, including the rights of women and girls, as well as ethnic and religious minorities.

“We are very worried about the situation and it is important to listen to those who are closest to Afghanistan and find out if there is anything we can do to contribute to promoting stability and respect for human rights,” said President Cederfelt opening the meeting. “The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly will work to assist as much as possible through our tools such as the Ad Hoc Committee on Migration, the Ad Hoc Committee on Countering Terrorism, and relevant Special Representatives. We will continue our work to serve our people.”

Cederfelt briefed participants about an earlier meeting on the subject last week with deputy heads of OSCE field offices in the three neighboring Central Asian states, noting that the situation is unpredictable and therefore it is important for OSCE parliamentarians to remain engaged.

CA meeting Pia KaumaPia KaumaSpecial Representative Pia Kauma said that Afghanistan’s security will not only affect neighboring countries but also the wider region, and emphasized the importance of keeping focus on the situation of refugees following the scheduled withdrawal of international troops by the end of August.

In his remarks, Shakirov stressed the importance of working to build confidence of the Afghan people. He highlighted concerns such as regional security and refugee flows, stressing the need to keep the situation under review.

Speaking on behalf of the OSCE PA’s Delegation from Tajikistan, Fattohzoda highlighted the importance of restoring peace in Afghanistan, noting that this would have a positive impact on the region as a whole. Political dialogue should be based on ensuring respect for human rights of all segments of society, he said.

Representing Uzbekistan’s Delegation to the OSCE PA, Safoev said that the main point of concern at the moment is the refugees, pointing out that Uzbekistan is working with numerous countries to manage humanitarian evacuations and to prevent spillover effect from Afghanistan to neighboring countries. In this regard, he stressed the need for more co-operation on border control, and called for increased co-ordination and exchange of views at the international level following a systematic approach. He noted that Uzbekistan supports talks in Doha to bring peace to Afghanistan, and stressed the need for the Taliban to fully respect international law.

CA meeting Saidmurod FattohzodaSaidmurod FattohzodaThe heads of OSCE field operations in Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan highlighted the importance of co-ordination and communication in meeting the security challenges in the region. Even before recent developments there have been serious concerns about border security, it was stressed, and in this regard the OSCE is working closely with host governments to develop the capacity of border troops. Projects may also be adapted, within the scope of current mandates, to enhance capacity building of the host countries in the field of security and combating violent extremism and radicalization that leads to terrorism.

Secretary General Montella noted that the August 31 deadline could represent a major upheaval for the way of life of millions of Afghans, in particular women and girls, and the international community must therefore emphasize the fundamental nature of human rights, stressing the obligations of governments to recognize and respect the rights of all their citizens.

It was emphasized that the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly is a good platform for focusing attention on the issue and participants expressed the desire to maintain close co-ordination and dialogue with the PA. President Cederfelt underlined the PA’s appreciation for the work of the OSCE field operations and pledged to help highlight their priorities.



Nat Parry

Head of Communications and Press

Office: +45 33 37 80 55
Mobile: +45 60 10 81 77
Email: [email protected]

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