The integration process launched in Central Asia at the initiative of Kazakhstan ended in nothing. Turkmenistan and Tajikistan have not signed an agreement on friendship, good neighborliness and cooperation, the most important document of the Fourth Consultative Meeting of the Heads of State of Central Asia.
Urging his colleagues to sign the treaty, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev spoke of the threat of an impending global recession fueled by sanctions wars and rising protectionism.
As a result, Turkmen President Serdar Berdimuhamedov promised that he would put his signature later, as soon as he "completed all domestic procedures." Tajikistan also refrained from signing with the same wording. Emomali Rahmon, like his Turkmen colleague, referred to the "settlement of internal state processes."
The agreement suited only Bishkek, Nur-Sultan and Tashkent.
Within its framework, the Central Asian countries should cooperate in the military, trade, economic, logistics, cultural and humanitarian spheres, as well as in the field of civil defense, energy and tourism. They are obliged to refrain from the use of military force against each other and "to act as a united bloc against modern challenges and threats."
The document strictly forbids them from taking part in actions directed against any of them. Disputable issues among themselves, the agreed countries should resolve "exclusively within the framework of dialogue by peaceful diplomatic means, including through the creation of appropriate mechanisms for interaction if necessary."
The next consultative meeting will take place in 2023 in Tajikistan. Azerbaijan is expected to join the participants as a guest of honor.