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The Caucasus Dialogue –2021. Day 3: About geopolitical problems of the Caucasus

The final day of research and educational program "The Caucasus Dialogue – 2021" was spent in discussions about geopolitical changes in the Caucasus. The participants talked about aspects of national and foreign policies of the countries in the Caucasus, analyzed influence of the past event on the current state of affairs, and also reviewed aspects of security in the region taking into consideration global problems in that area.

During his speech, Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Euro-Atlantic Security at the Institute of International Studies of MGIMO University and Editor-in-Chief of International Analytics magazine Sergey Markedonov emphasized importance of the North Caucasus region and, specifically, the Chechen Republic, for the political strategy of Russia:

"The process of integration of Chechnya into the national Russian legal and political space has turned out to be the most important geopolitical change over the past 30 years in the Caucasus. Without it, it is impossible to imagine either strengthening of the Russia's positions in that region or Russia in Syria or Russia as an active player in the Middle East, including usage of a certain Chechen resource for promotion of the Russia's interests."

According to Adnan Nagayev, Chairman of the Committee for Social Policy, Healthcare and Sport of the Chechen Parliament, Chechnya was dragged into the orbit of geopolitical interests of superpowers during a certain period of time, and the republic was used under different slogans by both, internal and external forces to achieve certain goals, which were right neither for the Chechen people nor for Russia. Deputy Chairman of the Government of Chechnya in charge of the foreign and national policies Dzhambulat Umarov also took part in the discussion.

Alexander Iskandaryan, Director of the Institute of Caucasus, shared his opinion about a different aspect of the topic:
"The situation in Nagorno-Karabakh has significantly changed. Russian peacemakers provide physical security of the people of Nagorno-Karabakh. Geopolitical and communications configurations have also changed. It has very much affected the situation in the South Caucasus."
When speaking about the influence of the Taliban* in Afghanistan on transformation of the radical Islamism in the Caucasus, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Eurasian Studies of MGIMO University of Russia, Academic Director of the Caucasus Dialogue – 2021 Akhmet Yarlykapov said;
"Currently, our state needs a response from the spiritual leadership of the muslims. However, we cannot force them to provide it. We are used to work in a black and white world, which we have built ourselves. And, unfortunately, the state has helped to build such picture of the world. A quick response is needed now, but clumsy institutions are not able to give it. The whole post-Taliban situation has demonstrated a serious crisis of our traditional muslim institutions, with which our state has to deal. A conclusion should be made from that silence, which by itself is extremely harmful for the state of the society because there is nothing worse than no answer."
At the end of the program of the event, the attendees discussed development of the resort infrastructure in the North Caucasus. The event ended with a certificates award ceremony and an official dinner.

The Caucasus Dialogue is an annual research and educational program of the Gorchakov Fund for exchange of opinions on the issues of global politics and international relations, important for the Caucasus. In 2021, Chechen State University has become a partner of the program. The participants included 20 professionals from Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan.

Read here about the first and the second days of the Caucasia Dialogue –2021

*a terrorist organization banned in Russia.