01 Jun 2007

Tajikistan and the EU: From Post-Conflict Reconstruction to Critical Engagement

Matteo Fumagalli

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The international community has traditionally looked at Tajikistan through the lenses of conflict prevention and post-conflict reconstruction, but there is now a significant opportunity for the EU to develop closer ties with that country within the context of its broader efforts to forge a Strategy for the Central Asian region. In this paper by Matteo Fumagalli, Lecturer at University College Dublin, it is argued that it is now time to dispose of this outdated framework and to begin to deal with Tajikistan as a ‘normal country’. Such a paradigm change would offer the EU key opportunities, namely operating in a country that has experienced relative stability since the end of its civil war in the 1990s and where, as a result, there is now the possibility to concentrate on advancing reform. Furthermore, progress in key areas in Tajikistan would offer the opportunity to promote similar policies elsewhere in the region.