President Vladimir Putin delivered a welcome address to the Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group at the opening of its regular session and the 9th International Economic Summit Russia-Islamic World. The telegram is published on the Kremlin’s website.
As the telegram goes, “today many Muslim countries face serious challenges, particularly escalating terrorism, militant extremism, sharp sectarian differences, and acute economic and social problems. I would like to emphasize the fact that the Islamic world can fully rely on Russia’s support or assistance”.
The President pointed out that Russia is ready to step up cooperation with regional partners while fighting against terrorism and settling crises peacefully. As he put it, “I am sure that joint efforts may enable us to strengthen international security and stability, build a just and democratic world order free from any intolerance, discrimination and force”.
Grozny became the venue for the third meeting of the Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group held on May 16 to 17 for the first time. Later the participants will move to Kazan for the 9th International Economic Summit Russia-Islamic World due to be convened in late May.
In his interview Evgeny Primakov, a Middle East expert and journalist, announced Russia’s possible steps to assist Muslim countries. When it comes to counterterrorism or counterextremism, Russia, in the first place, can shore up legitimate regimes of the Islamic world:
– Russia has been consistent in its efforts to lend the legitimate governments in the Middle East and Central Asia its support at many venues, including the Security Council and various world bodies. We are witnessing how extremists dismantle nation-states in the Middle East, for example. Such states require international legal protection and assistance.
We can export security, a major export for Russia. I was not the first to come up with the idea of defence and security export. Experts have been busy elaborating it. The notion can embrace military technology, cyber security solutions, arms exports, social technology and social engineering, as well as technologies to avert destabilization, to counter extremism, to put down color revolutions, etc. We have acquired extensive expertise in it of late. And we can impart our vast experience.
We can also share our intelligence. We have developed Internet technologies at hand. We could offer substantial assistance to Central Asian states in matters related to social technologies and engineering given the low living standards and social instability, with the situation being a breeding ground for extremists and their ideologies. We have always been good at eradicating poverty and working with the population. Moreover, our “partners” have become adept at dealing with such matters, educating and indoctrinating civil societies via NGOs and other organizations that work on the ground. It is only a matter of NGOs’ aims.
We could adopt these technologies for the betterment of the population and channel our efforts into developing healthcare, improving access to drinking water, or creating a communications system on the civil side. To be short, we could do much to essentially improve people’s living standards. We could be at our best here given the geographical proximity of the region and understandable logistics with Central Asia, which is susceptible to pressures and influences.