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Emomali Rahmon Receives Joe Biden’s Invitation to C5+1 Summit

Tajikistan has received an official invitation to a meeting in the C5+1 (Central Asia + USA) format, which is being hosted by President Joe Biden in the second half of September.

This was announced by Deputy Foreign Minister of Tajikistan Sodik Imomi, noting that President Emomali Rahmon has not yet made a final decision on participation in the summit in the United States.

Earlier last week, Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhiriddin met with Chairman of the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Gary Peters. “During the meeting, the parties discussed bilateral relations between Tajikistan and the United States in the political, economic, humanitarian and security spheres, and also exchanged views on the use of broad opportunities for the development of mutually beneficial cooperation,” said a message from the Tajik Foreign Ministry published on August 22. It is not reported whether issues related to the C5+1 summit with the participation of Biden and the leaders of Central Asian countries were discussed.

The media reported on August 23 that during Peters’ visit to Kazakhstan, Head of State Kassym-Jomart Tokayev received an invitation from Biden to the first summit of leaders of Central Asian countries and the United States.

Forbes magazine reported on August 18 that US President Joe Biden had invited the leaders of Central Asian countries to a summit scheduled for the second half of September. “I hope that on September 19 or 20 you will be able to join me (…) at the official meeting in format of the C5+1 to discuss how to further jointly advance our common goals in the field of security, economics and environmental protection,” the magazine quoted the text of the invitation.

Joe Biden’s decision to hold the first C5+1 summit with the participation of Central Asian presidents has irritated Moscow. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the member countries of the EAEU and CSTO are allegedly experiencing “colossal pressure” from the West. The frequent visits of Western politicians to these states to circumvent anti-Russian sanctions, in his words, “are blackmail and attempts to persuade Moscow’s allies to refuse to cooperate with it.”

At the same time, Lavrov noted that Russia understands the forced caution of its partners “under external pressure” and expects that “by developing ties with third countries and associations, Moscow’s allies in the EAEU and CSTO will not take steps that contradict their obligations.” .

C5+1 is a regional diplomatic platform for the US government “plus” the governments of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

C5+1 was established in 2015 as C5+1 and has since expanded U.S.-Central Asia ministerial-level dialogue and cooperation through expert meetings and thematic working groups.

The US State Department, in a statement dated February 27, 2023, described the C5+1 as a summit that “strengthens cooperation” within the region and between the United States and Central Asia, with the goal of achieving “an independent, prosperous and secure Central Asia that addresses shared challenges in partnership with the United States.”

“C5+1 is one of the means by which the United States supports the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the C5,” the statement said.

During the latest C5 + 1 ministerial meeting in Astana, which was attended by the foreign ministers of five countries in the region, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken announced that Washington will provide a new $25 million assistance package to the countries of the region.

Source : rus.azathabar.com