Kyrgyz Foreign Minister Sarbaev stressed that many of the problems plaguing Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan, such as security and drug trafficking, are in fact regional problems, and that multilateral negotiations and mutual concessions can help find solutions to these problems.
The economic crisis has had a clear impact on the already impoverished countries of Central Asia, but few Americans and Europeans have noticed. China and Russia have stepped in to provide aid, and their investments threaten institutional reform in the region.
Strengthening regional cooperation in Central Asia is one of the most powerful ways to foster development and would enable the states of the region to better meet the daunting individual and collective challenges they face.
The United States must recognize that former Soviet states are and will continue to be an important focus of Russia’s foreign policy, and should take a broader regional view to its relationships with countries in Russia's sphere of influence.
The Obama administration needs a new approach to the Caspian region that provides opportunities for local leaders to engage with the United States in economic and political development.
In the wake of Kyrgyzstan’s decision to close its American airbase the U.S. must find a Central Asian location for its logistical operations outside of Afghanistan to ensure they remain uninterrupted in case the war deteriorates further.
Three years since the Tulip Revolution much of the support for the current Kyrgyz government has faded. The Kyrgyz opposition that once struggled to bring about this revolution now argues that simply changing the leaders will not produce the needed reforms. Instead, the opposition contends that a new political system, one that checks the power of the majority party, must be implemented.
On November 10-12, 2008, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Foundation of Regional Policy, Tashkent, Uzbekistan, with support by the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Institute of the Asian Development Bank, held an international seminar on “Renewable Energy in Central Asia: Enhancing Food Security and Improving Social and Economic Conditions in Remote Locations.”
2007 witnessed a "notable setback for global freedom." Some of this is the fault of the Bush administration, whose policies have given democratization a bad name. At the same time, new democracies have not figured out how to secure their new political systems beyond their first elections. Some democratization advocates wonder whether democracy has reached its global limits.
As the security situation in Afghanistan worsens, the international community has overlooked signs of political instability throughout Central Asia that could render Afghanistan even more unstable.