Stop the Presses!

by Nathan Hamm on 6/24/2005

Russia’s Foreign Minister has some groundbreaking information on terrorism in Central Asia.

Russian security agencies have information that terrorists infiltrate the territory of Uzbekistan from Afghanistan.

“Former militants from the ‘Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan,’ Taliban fighters, and those parties who conducted terrorist activities on Russian territory help to train terrorists in regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan near the Afghan-Uzbek border,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told a news conference after talks with the NATO secretary-general.

When asked about external factors in the May disturbances in the Uzbek town of Andijan, Lavrov said: “We have information indicating that terrorists move to the Fergana Valley from several regions of Afghanistan.”

Oh. My. God.

Terrorists who enter Uzbekistan get trained in Afghanistan and Pakistan? Incredible…

They’ve come into the Ferghana Valley before? They absolutely must have been involved in Andijon then.

Note that Lavrov conveniently has left out that the Ferghana Valley does not border Afghanistan and that anyone wanting to get into it from Afghanistan will most likely cross in from Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.

Which means in years past they went right by Russian border guards. The same guards who occasionally rented out their equipment and services as pilots and drug mules to make the crossing easier.

Just sayin’… I mean, after all, if Afghanistan’s such a problem for the security of CSTO members, Russia could, I don’t know, maybe offer to help do something about it.

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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