REGIONAL SECURITY MECHANISMS IN CENTRAL ASIA: DEVELOPMENT TRENDS
Inomzhon Bobokulov, Ph.D. (Law), doctorate candidate at the University of World Economy and Diplomacy (Tashkent, Uzbekistan)
Security regionalization is one of the most striking features of international relations in a world where the formerly clear boundaries of national security are rapidly disappearing. The region is developing into an important factor of universal peace and stability. This, in turn, is largely changing our traditional ideas about the means and methods of national security as a sine qua non of sovereign states’ stability.
Security regionalization is itself a direct outcome of such visible trends in the contemporary world as much more frequent cases of “humanitarian interference” in the internal affairs of states; diminished pertinence of traditional armed conflicts against the background of much more frequent armed conflicts inside states; much higher significance of peacekeeping efforts and the “human security” factor, etc.
These trends pushed the idea of regionalism to the forefront, demonstrated to all that the so-called sovereign answer to contemporary challenges is ineffective, and put a “collective (regional) response” to such challenges on the agenda.
It is commonly believed that in the 21st century no state can rely on its own forces alone, which means that “collective strategies, collective structures, and an awareness of collective responsibility have become absolutely indispensable.”
In this context, the regional mechanisms and institutions of states are treated as effective international legal instruments of peace and security. Their usefulness is ensured mainly by internal structuring and the availability of means and mechanisms of conflict settlement (either interstate or domestic). These mechanisms and institutions are useful in settling local disagreements in full conformity with the U.N. Charter.
Central Asia: Regional Security Mechanisms, Their Development and Classification
The death of the Soviet Union, which destroyed the bipolar system of international relations, put an end to the single defense and security system.
It was replaced by a “security vacuum” in which the old security system was either already nonexistent or ill-suited to the new realities, while a new one had not yet been created. The Central Asian countries had to act fast in the new conditions: they badly needed effective institutional and legal security frameworks to be set up as promptly as possible. This meant that the Central Asian states had to cope with the dual task of preserving (or adjusting) some of the old security elements and setting up a qualitatively new security system in the region.
This institutionalized security at two interconnected and mutually complementary levels: post-Soviet and regional (Central Asian), thus enforcing the international legal and organizational relations between the states.
The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) ushered in an era of sovereign states. One of the basic documents, the agreement which set up the CIS, said that “the Union of the S.S.R. as a subject of international law and a geopolitical reality has ceased to exist.”
Until the mid-1990s, when other regional inter-state structures came into being (the Central Asian Union [CAU], the Partnership for.............