e themselves under the tag of “Central Asia” and rejected their traditional Soviet designation “Srednieia Aziia I Kazakhstan” (i.e., “Middle Asia and Kazakhstan”) (Rosset and Svarin 245). The declaration was the first step of these states towards establishing own identity and reduce the Soviet influence. However, economics and politics have been strongly interwoven in the rich historical relationship between Central Asia (Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan) and Russia, which couldn’t separated so easily (Rosset and Svarin 245-247). The current active political involvement of Russia in Central Asia is based on various political and economical interests. The purpose of this paper is to analyze Current Russia’s role in Central Asian region, historical background, political structure, issues, and Russian policies towards Central Asia.
Russia’s political interests in Central Asia over the last 20 years can be distinguished into three basic periods. During the initial period, i.e. from the collapse of Soviet Union in 1991 to the mid-1990s, Russia had neither any interest in Central Asian region nor any foreign policy to deal with the Central Asian states. The negligence towards Central Asia was economical, political, cultural, and even ideological (Oliphant 3). The second period, from the mid-1990s to the late 1990s, witnessed a change in Russia’s approach and was highly influenced by the Primakov’s principle to reestablish Russia’s influence in the former Soviet states (Oliphant 3). This policy was partially successful. The third period can be categorized from the beginning of Putin administration in 2000 till the present, focusing on the Russia’s active engagement in Central Asia (Oliphant 3). Russia’s growing involvement in the region has political, security, and economic dimensions.
Massive numbers of Russian armed forces were presented in the Central Asia during the early 1990s. All newly created Central