If a nation does not know its history, if the country loses its history, then its citizens have nowhere to go.
Mirzhakyp Dulatuly

Internal regional security threats to Kazakhstan. Part I. Traditional threats

In the Central Asia there is a complex of internal problems which don't find the practical solution and continue to become more complicated.

In the Central Asia there is a complex of internal problems which don’t find the practical solution and continue to become more complicated.

1. Solution of a hydro-power problem is one of the most acute issues in the region. For the last years all over the world increased demand not only for hydrocarbons, but also for water resources which are not the goods of international trade. In the countries of the Central Asia deficiency of water accrues faster, than it was expected.
2. Moreover the status of some disputed territories still remains unresolved. Unfortunately there are also interethnic conflicts thereby, the sociopolitical contradictions' aggravation led to escalating interfaith conflicts.
3. Serious risks to regional security are possessed by the complex of closely interconnected problems: religious extremism, drug trafficking, illegal migration [1], terrorism, weapons smuggling, etc.
4. Food security is one of the most important potential issues in the Central Asia. Food security is an integral part of economic well-being and a basic vector of national security. Thereby the CA states should be capable to satisfy the current and extreme demand.
5. The last is a problem of aggravating ecological situation in the region as in a whole world.

The issue of an existing water infrastructure was caused by the fact of its construction within the framework of the USSR period, the system was intended to satisfy demand of all CA republics, in fact borders between them were administrative. All countries of the region have incurred economic losses because of water problems. In a long term prospect the issue of water use in the region would aggravate by the high rates of population growth, there are also two potential reasons, which could led to deterioration of the situation: the first is economic development of Afghanistan, located in the upstream of Amudarya, the second is PRC’s plans on water drainage from rivers Irtysh and Ili.

According to the World Bank experts, creation of an compensatory mechanism within the regional regime for cooperation in sphere of common hydro-power resources usage, is more economically expedient than separate policy of the states on own water security maintenance. The most important contraventions consist in difference of the interests. One countries require water for irrigation needs (Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan), other — for hydro-power needs (Kirghizia, Tajikistan).

All countries of the region have an unique characteristics. Tajikistan possesses huge stocks of hydro-power resources. The country occupies the eighth place in the world on potential hydro-power reserves; it shares about 4 percent hydro-power potential of the Earth. The unique hydrological feature and advantage of Kirghizia is comprised by the fact that water resources are almost completely formed in own territory of the country.

The Central Asia states are interested in conflicts minimization in the field of hydro-power potential development and steady fair regulation in usage of trans-border river sources. However each the CA region state aspires unilaterally solves a water security problem. The water security issue in the Central Asia consists in less extent in shortage of water resources, and more in inability of the countries to find a compromise

Territorial claims potentially can considerably destabilize security environment in the CA. As the international practice shows, disputable boundary questions arise usually when in a country appears serious economic or political difficulties, and due to switching public attention on external problems it is possible to distract population from more essential internal issues or when disputable territories appear rich mineral resources.

Uzbekistan has territorial claims to Kazakhstan, among disputable territories there are not only lands populated with ethnic Uzbeks, but also areas rich in mineral resources. Besides, Kazakhstan has the biggest territory in the region, and Uzbekistan — the highest population density. Growing population in future may begin search for new territories.

Between Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan there are also exist unresolved issues on coast and water area of the Aral Sea. There is a geological data that these territories may be reach in oil and gas. The border on considerably shoaled sea generally remains only nominally limited, thus Tashkent is not going to concede the areas capable in the near future to bring essential economic profits.

The set of territorial problems exists between Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Because of the Soviet frontier division, ethnic Tajiks appeared in territory of Uzbekistan, and Uzbeks — in Tajikistan. Rather specifically, if not rigidly, during Soviet times was drawn the frontier line between Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, and also between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan (especially on Pamir). There are many disputable moments in territorial delimitation of Turkmenistan with not only Uzbekistan, but also with Azerbaijan across the Caspian Sea.

However, it is necessary to emphasize, that the problem has only potential character, but we shouldn’t forget about it, the question of disputable territories is quite solved with constructive initiatives and through the diplomatic tools. Very prominent experience possesses example of Kazakhstan in settlement of territorial disputes with the PRC.

Counteraction to terrorism is one of the priority directions in ensuring national security of the country. Kazakhstan condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and supports acceptance of collective efforts of the world community in fighting against this phenomenon.

Kazakhstan strictly fulfills requirements of the Resolution of UN Security Council and annually represents the National report on the done work in Counter-terrorism committee of the United Nations. The RK supported creation and took active part in activity of the International counterterrorist coalition. Kazakhstan has joined to fourteen international universal tools on fight against terrorism.

Organizations which activity has terrorist character are forbidden on the territory of Kazakhstan. The national list of forbidden terrorist and extremist organizations includes 16 foreign structures. There are: «Al-Qaeda», «Asbat al-Ansar», «Muslim Brotherhood», «Boz gourde», «Zhamaat of Mujahideens of Central Asia», «Islamic movement of Uzbekistan», «Islamic party of East Turkestan», «The Kurdish national congress», «Taliban», «Lashkar-i-Tayba», «Hizb-ut-Tahrir», «Tabligi Jamia» and «Society of social reforms», «AUM of Sinrikyo», «Organization of liberation of East Turkestan», «Dzhund-al-Halifat (Soldiers of the caliphate)».

The great value is given to development of the regional cooperation presented by the activity of the Anti-terrorist center of Commonwealths of Independent States, Regional anti-terrorist structure of the SCO, and also within undertaken measures in the sphere of fight against terrorism and extremism of the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

In 2010 Kazakhstan presided in the OSCE having an extensive experience in military-political area and high potential for its implementation in specific actions. Within military-political measurement more than 60 actions were carried out. Conference on terrorism prevention took place on October 14–15, 2010 in Astana. The main result of the conference in Astana is the declaration, which confirmed adherence and commitment of the OSCE state-parties and the partner-states to business of fight against terrorism.

Kazakhstan joined the international system to combat drug trafficking by ratifying all major UN conventions in this field: Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961, the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988.

Today, Ministry of Internal Affairs through the framework of multilateral agreements interacts with law enforcement agencies of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Russia, Azerbaijan and other CIS countries, on the basis of more than 50 intergovernmental and interdepartmental agreements shall cooperate with other foreign partners. Kazakhstan was twice elected a member of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs (2000–2003 and 2008–2011.).

Reaffirming its commitment to promote the UN activity in countering the drug threat, Kazakhstan has provided all necessary conditions for the establishment on its territory the Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre (CARICC) to combat drug trafficking. It is one of the most important joint projects of participants of the Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation in the control of illicit production, trafficking and abuse of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors.

During the recent years, Kazakhstan’s migration balance has clearly improved. A phenomenon on the regional scale is the reemigration to Kazakhstan Russians who several years earlier decided to return to Russia and Kazakhs who have so far lived outside of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is an attractive job market for its neighbors and nothing seems to indicate that the situation could change in the nearest future. Labour migration alleviate social tensions in such countries as Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

1. The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace // http://carnegieendowment.org/ieb/2012/06/21/central-asia-s-migrant-headache/c41a дата открытия: 24.10.2013

Makubayev Yu.