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Top security bosses of Central Asia converge in Delhi to take stock of situation in Afghanistan

National Security Advisor Ajit Doval with other NSAs of Central Asia and Tajikistan President Emomali Rahmon at the 16th Meeting of Security Council Secretaries of SCO member states in Dushanbe in June, earlier this year (Image courtesy: Twitter/@IndEmbDushanbe)

The evolving security situation in Afghanistan remains an area of common concern as India hosts the 'Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan' on Wednesday.

Led by India's National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, the top security chiefs of five Central Asian countries – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – besides Russia and Iran, will be deliberating upon measures to address the relevant security challenges in the region.

Even as it stands with Afghanistan during the extremely challenging times, New Delhi believes that any instability in Kabul will have wider ramifications for the region.

While Russia will be represented by its Secretary of the Security Council Nikolai Patrushev, Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani, the Secretary of Iran's National Security Council, will be attending the meeting.  

Perhaps the most affected, and also the most vulnerable, with the return of Taliban in Kabul remain the countries of the Central Asian region. Here's a look at their participants at the high-level dialogue:

Karim Qajymqanuly Massimov, Kazakhstan


A file photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Karim Qajymqanuly Massimov during his visit to Kazakhstan in July 2015 (Image courtesy: Twitter/@NarendraModi)

Currently the Chairman of the National Security Committee, Karim Massimov also served as Prime Minister of Kazakhstan from 2007 to 2012 and again from April 2014 to September 2016. He is also proficient in five languages, including Chinese and Arabic besides Kazakh, Russian and English. In 2015, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi had landed in Astana, the capital city of Kazakhstan, it was Massimov who had personally received him at the airport. PM Modi thanked Massimov for the "memorable welcome" as both leaders held extensive talks and discussed ways to advance cooperation between the two countries.

Marat Mukanovich Imankulov, Kyrgyzstan  


Secretary of Security Council of Kyrgyzstan, Lieutenant General Marat Imankulov with NSA Ajit Doval in New Delhi, last month

Lieutenant General Marat Imankulov has been in the national security agencies of Kyrgyzstan since 1986. As the Secretary of the Security Council of his country, Imankulov was in New Delhi almost two weeks ago to hold talks with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval during the first India-Kyrgyzstan Strategic Dialogue. Born in the Chui region, Imankulov has done KGB courses in Kiev (1987) and Tashkent (1991) before self-nominating his candidature for presidency in 2011. He has been playing an active role in the development of Kyrgyz-Indian cooperation in all areas of interest, including the military and defence spheres.

Nasrullo Rahmatjon Mahmudzoda, Tajikistan  


Tajikistan NSA Mahmudzoda Nasrullo Rahmatjon with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar during his visit to New Delhi in February, earlier this year (Image courtesy: Twitter/@DrSJaishankar)

Tajikistan believes that Afghanistan is once again becoming a hotbed of international terrorism after the return of Taliban in Kabul. Country's President Emomali Rahmon has over the last many months highlighted that the "catastrophic situation" in Afghanistan directly affects the Central Asian collective security zone and especially Tajikistan which shares more than 1,400 kilometers of border with the war-torn country. As Secretary of the country's Security Council, Rahmatjon had visited India earlier this year and also held extensive talks with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on the constantly developing regional situation besides agreeing on accelerating the ongoing bilateral cooperation.

Charymyrat Kakalyevich Amanov, Turkmenistan  

Afghanistan Taliban

President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov with Secretary of the State Security Council Charymyrat Amanov (right)

Police Lieutenant General Charymyrat Amanov was shifted from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and appointed as the Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers and Secretary of the State Security Council of Turkmenistan, last year. Improvement of situation in Afghanistan is extremely vital for Turkmenistan considering the construction of Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline, Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan (TAP) power transmission line and the railroad from Turkmenistan to some provinces of Afghanistan. On October 31, Turkmenistan's Minister of Foreign Affairs Rashid Meredov travelled to Kabul and held several meetings with the high-ranking officials of the Taliban regime.

Viktor Makhmudov, Uzbekistan


A file photo of Uzbekistan NSA Viktor Makhmudov (right) with his Afghanistani counterpart Hamdullah Mohib in Ufa in June 2019 (Image courtesy: Twitter/@NSCAfghan)

Uzbekistan has maintained that it is "impossible to isolate Afghanistan" and leave it within the range of its problems during these challenging times. The country has recently opened the Uzbek-Afghan border and also resumed the supply of basic needs and oil products, as well as electricity to Afghanistan. Uzbekistan's National Security Advisor Lt Gen Viktor Makhmudov, who will be attending the meet in New Delhi, was also on a three-day visit to Pakistan last week. Makhmudov met his Pakistani counterpart Moeed Yousaf, Pakistani PM Imran Khan and also visited the Torkham border and Pakistan Military Academy during his three-day stay in the country.

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