Central Asia's Security: Issues and Implications for U.S. Interests [Updated January 29, 2008]   [open pdf - 317KB]

"Since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States, the Administration has established bases and other military access in the region for U.S.- led coalition actions in Afghanistan, and it has stressed that the United States will remain interested in the long-term security and stability of the region. The United States seeks to thwart dangers posed to its security by the illicit transfer of strategic missile, nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons technologies, materials, and expertise to terrorist states or groups, and to address threats posed to regional independence by Iran. Some critics counter that the United States has historically had few interests in this region, and advocate only limited U.S. contacts undertaken with Turkey and other friends and allies to ensure U.S. goals. They also argue that the region's energy resources may not measurably enhance U.S. energy security. Most in Congress have supported U.S. assistance to bolster independence and reforms in Central Asia. The 106th Congress authorized a 'Silk Road' initiative for greater policy attention and aid for democratization, market reforms, humanitarian needs, conflict resolution, transport infrastructure (including energy pipelines), and border controls. The 108th and 109th Congresses imposed conditions on foreign assistance to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, based on their human rights records. The 110th Congress has continued to address concerns about what should be the appropriate level and scope of U.S. interest and involvement in the region."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL30294
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