On December 5 this year at the UN Headquarters in New York City, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism (UNOCT) and the Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies (ISRS) under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
The document was signed by the Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations Office of Counter-Terrorism Vladimir Voronkov and the Director of the Institute for Strategic and Regional Studies under the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Eldor Aripov.
Mr. Voronkov thanked the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev for the personal attention paid to developing comprehensive interaction with UN structures.
He also expressed his gratitude to the Government of Uzbekistan for its financial contribution to the UN Counter-Terrorism Office.
The parties emphasized that ISRS became the first think tank in Central Asia and entered, along with governments, into the so-called “group of privileged partners” with which the UN signed cooperation agreements.
The UNOCT head noted that the UN highly values the expert potential of the Institute and expects its broad involvement in solving the problems facing the Organization.
Voronkov also expressed confidence that the Memorandum will contribute to raising Uzbekistan's bilateral cooperation with the UN to a qualitatively new level and enrich it with practical content.
In turn, ISRS Director E. Aripov noted the achieved high level of interaction between ISRS and the UNOCT, thanking the entire UNOCT team for fruitful cooperation.
According to him, the signing of the Memorandum has become one of the examples of successful implementation of the provisions of the Roadmap of Cooperation between Uzbekistan and the United Nations, signed on the initiative of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev.
During the event, the parties also recognized that the Memorandum was a logical continuation of the effective partnership between ISRS and the UNOCT, and would create a solid legal basis for bilateral interaction.
Thus, the Memorandum reflects the main principles and areas of cooperation, including the exchange of publications and research information, the implementation of joint projects within the framework of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, as well as the solution of other issues of mutual interest.
To date, ISRS, together with the UNOCT, has already accumulated solid experience in joint implementation of the UN Counter-Terrorism Agenda in the region.
An example of this is the successful high-level international conference on the implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in Central Asia held in Tashkent in March 2022.
A number of important documents were adopted at this conference. Among them is the Joint Action Plan for the implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in a new edition, as well as the Tashkent Declaration, which confirmed the commitment of the Central Asian states to cooperation within the framework of the new action plan.
This year, two regional events on cybersecurity and new technologies, as well as countering the financing of terrorism with cryptocurrencies, have been organized in Tashkent.
Currently, the parties are working together to create, under the auspices of the UNOCT, a Regional Expert Council in Central Asia from among leading experts on the issues of rehabilitation and reintegration of returnees.
The initiative to create such a Regional Council was announced by the President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev at the above-mentioned conference in Tashkent.
In this regard, an agreement was reached to hold the first meeting of the Council in Tashkent next year with the participation of UN Deputy Secretary General Vladimir Voronkov.
In general, the parties noted that the conclusion of this Memorandum opens a new page of long-term and constructive cooperation between the UNOCT and ISRS in solving such an important and urgent task as countering terrorism in Central Asia.