President of the Republic of Tajikistan

Speech at the meeting dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the 16th Session of the Supreeme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan

16.11.2012 12:05, Dushanbe city

Dear compatriots!
Distinguished audience!

The developments happen in the history of every nation which play decisive role in its future life and destiny. The 16th session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan is among the most important and determining events which played a central role in rescuing our newly-independent state from the bursting flame of the destructrive civil war and helped to restore the constitutional regime, to normalize political situation, promote rule of law and facilitate socio-economic development of the country.

From this point of view we can confidently say, that an implementation of historic decisions and resolutions of this session gave start to further achievements of the Tajik nation.

As we mark the 20th anniversary of this historic session I in this connection am pleased to extend heartfelt felicitations to the glorious and noble people of Tajikistan who has made an invaluable contribution in safeguarding national statehood, strengthening peace and genuine stability, promoting national unity and self-acknowdlegment and seizing this opportunity I wish all those every success and the well-being.

Today, when 20 years has elapsed since that time, we have a chance and opportunity to intensely analyze that historic meeting and yield necessary conclusions for the overall progress of the country and the prospect of its development in the years to come.

The 16th session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan given the highest goals of our independent state has been held in the most challenging political milestone of society, with the view to bring peace and national unity for whole Tajik nation, to save the nation from the vortex of political and economic, social and cultural crisis, to safeguard an integrity of the independent and sovereign Tajik state, to create conditions and build strong foundation for the rehabilitation of the economy in the aftermath of destructive fratricidal war and promote Tajikistan’s growth in future.

In this regard, this joyous and festive celebration is the occasion of proud and the great responsibility for the bright future.

We take pride in that this session has determined the fate of the Tajik nation in the most sensitive historic period, and saved our state from extinction and rescued the nation from dispersion.

Great responsibility is reflected in implementing those critical and historic tasks which we have been entrusted with by this determining session.

Fortunately, we relying on the age-old wisdom and support of a glorious and noble Tajik people proudly managed to achieve identified goals within short historical period.

These tasks, we believe are part of our responsibility before the country, the state, the nation and every citizen of our sovereign homeland.

I should note that the revival of the national statehood was among the key issues of our modern history, since without the existence of a sovereign nation-state it could be impossible to carry out long-standing aspirations of the Tajik people, as well as the goals and programs of the Government.

You should always keep in mind that we had the opportunity to have a national state after thousand years.

Judge yourself, if young and new state would have drowned in the whirlpool of selfish intentions of detractors of the Tajik nation, spirit of ancestors and the future generations would never forgive us.

In that difficult and unsafe situation of 1992, the only hope for the country to find a way out of a vortex of internal war and prevention of bloodshed was an urgent call of the Supreme Council of Tajikistan.

Since the Supreme Council was an only politically competent and constitutional authority that time.

Despite the difficult political situation, healthy forces of society, supporters of peace, self -conscious and patriotic people and those well-wishers, clearly understood the importance of call for the session with the recognition of high civil responsibility concerning the present and the future life of Tajikistan.

We all acknowledged that any delay in the call for session may cause the burst into flames of fratricidal war, deteriorating the political situation and disperse the nation.

Moreover, each armed group, using the powerless situation of the country, aimed to reach its dirty goals.

In this historically sensitive moment, the only objective of the new leadership of the Tajik government was first of all to extinguish the flames of war, to prevent bloodshed, save people and rescue the state from the distraction.

Fortunately, owing to this session, that historic mission was accomplished and our national state had been released and safeguarded from the misery. It is suffice to mention that the 16th Session of the Supreme Council was the most critical event of the country that established the newest history of the Tajik people.

Territorial integrity is an important factor, without which there can be neither state, nor its governance.

Since, in those terrible days it was made a new plan to split new Tajik state into several parts.

Furthermore, during those years, the system of governance and government agencies were paralyzed. That is, the fate of an existence of the Tajik state was undermined.

History has shown that internal permanent conflicts and anarchy cause dispersion and extinction of peoples and states.

We all remember using the situation in Tajikistan, that plan was supported not only by certain foreign circles, but also by some politicians and internal political groups, who made their first steps to implement it.

Dushanbe city lost its political identity as the capital and home of future hopes of the Tajik people.

Therefore, the XVI Session of Supreme Council of Tajikistan was held in the historic city of Khujand, in Arbob Palace, which at the time was comparatively peaceful region of the country whence we have made first steps forward towards building peace and declaration of a constitutional government.

The XVIth Session brought an opportunity to defend the territorial integrity of Tajikistan as a unitary independent state.

Due to creative will of the people and continued unstinting efforts of the Government of the country and the support of the Tajik people, Tajikistan’s unity was restored within short period of time and the capital of the state from the centre of the political conflict and civil confrontations was turned into the cradle of building national unity.

This achievement will forever remain in the history of the national state-governance of the Tajik people and will be forever remembered as the yield of the historic and decisive Session.

The XVIth Session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan opened a new page in the history of Tajik governance and brought to the end the chaotic period of conflicts and vain efforts of some people relying on internal and foreign forces to get government positions.

After the historic session, it became apparent that the new governance of the country is ready to take all necessary measures to ensure the peace, national unity, territorial integrity and security to achieve national independence.

The new leadership of the country had strong will and commitment to make extensive efforts to this end.

During the Session, we have declared to the international community and authoritative international organizations that Tajikistan stands ready to establish relationship with all nations on the basis of the norms and principles of the international law and it is a supporter of building lasting peace and life of dignity for every citizen of Tajikistan.

The international community, being interested in the XVIth Session of the Supreme Council of Tajikistan, expressed its solidarity and support to the new leadership of Tajikistan on the enacted acts, its efforts and commitment to restore the constitutional system and building democratic, legal and secular state.

In this connection, the XVIth Session of the Supreme Council of Tajikistan has international significance.

Documents endorsed by the government had historical importance both for the Tajik people and for the cause of the regional security.

Resolutions adopted at the XVIth Session of the Supreme Council of Tajikistan played a pivotal and decisive role in the minds of every Tajik and showed the noble people of Tajikistan a way of constructive endeavor, strengthening efforts and wishes of people for democracy and peaceful life, and boosted the confidence and expectations of the people in the constitutional government.

Alongside this, the XVIth Session had provided a good basis for the restoration and the reinforcement of the pillars and institutions of national state governance.

Please recollect how difficult was the situation, most people in the country were scared, they did not believe in the future of the state and even refused to accept high government positions.

Only owing to this Session, we were able to restore the constitutional system and the function of paralyzed government sectors within short period.

At this time, independent Tajikistan has become an owner of a strong governance system, active government, National Army, judicial power, law enforcement bodies, national symbols, including National Emblem and Flag and other necessary state attributes.

Legal instruments adopted at the XVI Session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan and ambitious initiatives of a newly elected political leadership of the country have laid a solid ground for the end of fratricidal war, preventing further bloodshed, bringing peace and stability in society, restore the pillars of state governance, strengthen the bases of national independence and initating state-building.

It has to be particularly mentioned that the Sixteenth session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan opened a new page in the constitutional reforms in the country.

It was at this session a number of amendments were made to the present Constitution, which on the one hand, were in compliance with the requirements of modern times, and on the other hand - provided the basis for the drafting a new Constitution of the Republic of Tajikistan. Not only the central government bodies, but local authorities in most of the war-ravaged regions of the country have been completely restored within short span of time. Mutual understanding of the absolute majority of members of parliament, their unity and unanimity in recognizing important and vital issues of the country, their high sense of responsibility in their committments contributed to further building on the foundations of national unity and development.

In other words, at a challenging political epoch for our country, the Sixteenth session was the first meeting, when the majority of the members, united around the leadership of the Supreme Council, unanimously supported the acts and documents discussed during the meeting.

I want to particularly emphasize that, the deputies were more than ever active and united in the sixteenth session.

Therefore, taking the advantage of this opportunity, I would like to express my gratitude to all the participants and those who have put efforts for the arrangement of that historic meeting.

Later, the Sixteenth session of the Supreme Council guided us to the path of national unity, gave a strong impetus to the strengthening and overall development.

Ideas of peace and national reconciliation, amnesty and mutual forgiveness had for the first time been heard at this session and later formed the substance of the newly elected government.

Along with this, I recall that, although the glorious people of Tajikistan yearned for peace and unity, those within the country and beyond who were trying to impose a civil war, did not give up their selfish plans.

Therefore, in my address to the glorious people of Tajikistan on 12 December 1992, I said that "I will devote all my knowledge and experience for the restoration of peace in every home and every family to faithfully serve for the progress and prosperity of my beloved country. To achieve this sacred goal, if necessary, I am ready to sacrifice my life, since I do believe in the bright future of my country and its long happy life of the people ... ".

I also said that time "I am a supporter of the democratic, legal and secular state.

We should all be brothers and stand side by side to normalize the situation". And I never forget these words.

Indeed, we were able in a short time to return nearly one million homeless and refugee people back to their homes, and through the efforts of creative people repaired and restored hundreds of thousands of homes, schools, office buildings, bridges and other objects destroyed by war, the costs of which added up to ten billion dollars.

I wish to underline that, more than 150 thousand of our compatriots gave their lives to the cause of peace and stability, strengthen the constitutional system. We will never forget those sacrifices and the people.

Finally, after five years of continuous efforts, with the support of the glorious and proud people of Tajikistan the General Agreement on the Establishment of Peace and National Accord was signed.

We proudly this year have commemorated the 15th anniversary of this historic and the fateful date.

We can longer talk about the analysis of rough and intricate road to peace and post-conflict rehabilitation of Tajiks in Tajikistan. But now I want to emphasize two specific points.

First, the Tajik peace, above all, is the result of candid efforts and vivid aspirations of the proud sons of the Tajik people, the victory of eternal wisdom and peacefulness and the culture of the glorious people of Tajikistan.

Furthermore, our friendly countries and international organizations have made a significant contribution to achieving these happy days of the Tajik people.

So, taking this opportunity on behalf of the whole Tajik people I am humbled to extend most sincere gratitude to the United Nations, its institutions functioning in our country, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the guarantor-countries for their support. Tajik people will cherish its memories of their impartial support forever.

Dear friends!

Based on historical decisions and creative unity-buidling spirit of the Sixteenth Session, we managed to build a foundation of national unity.

I mean, first of all, the construction of roads of domestic and international importance, tunnels, hydropower plants, power transmission lines and etc.

Roads are especially of economic, social and communication importance. However, while building these vital facilities and infrastructure, in addition to the economic programs of the government we have pursued serious purposes, counting on the roads, as the arteries can transform our country into a united nation and may turn our nation as one people.

Roads being a factor of connection of hearts, bring the rites and traditions of the various regions of our country together and play a pivotal role in the formation of national unity.

As you know, a few days ago, thanks to the inauguration of the “Shahristan” tunnel our country has been taken out of the isolation of transport and we ensured an uninterrupted road links between the regions.

Please judge yourself, how we could protect the national unity and even more strengthen that unity in the country, the regions of which are deprived of immediate road connections nearly six months a year and the people of which didn’t have the opportunity to reach to each other?

Namely continued and the year round communication takes the people's minds out from a limited range of the village and the region, and facilitates achievement of genuine unity and solidarity of the people of the country.

During this period of time, the Government of the country has managed to set an integrated power grid of the country, which is not only a factor in improving the level and quality of life, but it has also become one of the ways of safeguarding national security.

Besides, we could establish a universal data network at the national level.

Today the broadcasting of television channels and radio stations in Tajikistan covers all areas and the corners of the country, which plays an important role in strengthening national unity and the formation of a common national consciousness.

Another point which I am keen to talk about is the definition of a new system of our state.

It was at the Sixteenth Session of the Supreme Council that laid an unbreakable foundation for a new system of Tajik statehood that is, built the principles of democratic, constitutional and secular state.

This core idea was expressed at that session, and later was included into the first Constitution of independent Tajikistan.

Over this time, we were able to provide through the Constitution the norms and the rules of the democratic governance, including the democratic foundations of the political system, secular and social nature of the state, the supremacy of human rights and freedoms, the principle of political pluralism, the activities of a professional parliament, inviolability of private property, justice equality of all before the law, and freedom of conscience and belief.

On this basis, firm foundations of one of the most important institutions of a democratic society - a multi-party system had been laid down for the first time in the country.

As we are talking about political parties, I would like to note a few other points related to this issue.

Of course, each party has a special political and ideological position and has its own program, and it is the essence of multi-party system.

Now, however, the political parties must place national interests, fundamental values ​​of the state, the interests of stability and security of the country above the limited interests of a party and the group.

The only regulation governing the activities of political parties is the legislation of the Republic of Tajikistan, which has created an opportunity for them to function in a free and democratic atmosphere.

In this respect, the political parties have to be a school to raise political and legal culture of the people, be the supreme example of compliance with and the respect of the existing and acting legislation of the country.

Distinguished audience!

We can say with full confidence that a new milestone of a revival of the Tajik people goes back to the sixteenth session of the Supreme Council. During this period we were able to make steady steps forward towards the restoration of the national culture and values, formation and strengthening of self-knowledge, and the promotion of the national spirit of unity.

Over this period, we have managed to raise the status and the image of the Tajik language, which is one of the essential foundations of statehood, and we promoted its wide use in political, economic, social and cultural spheres.

In the process of rehabilitation of the national self-consiousness, a part of the people was of opinion that we give over-volume importance to the history and the past.

We should not forget that if we not duly study our past, if we fail to really evaluate current processes then we can not determine the right path for its further development.

When the foundation of our national self-acknowledgement was seriously damaged and our nation somewhat moved away from its originality, revival of the historical memory of the nation and national self-knowledge becomes important as a national historical and public-political necessity.

All of these initiatives are in the name of educating the younger generation in the spirit of patriotism and national values, so that our people achieves national self-knowledge and find its identity.

Dear friends!

Now I want to speak on a number of other points that are associated with the major directions of the current state of development of our state.

The first direction is the protection of the state. We have until now largely passed a very difficult epoch of revival and restoration of its national statehood and addressed many challenges related to this period.

However, the question of the protection of this great achievement, defense of the state and the national state-governance is a key and vital issue.

This point becomes even more important and serious in the era complicated by the geopolitical situation in the region and the world, intricate by the intensification of conflict of interests between the superpowers and a threat to the independence of national states in the context of globalization.

Rapidly changing situation of the modern world does not give us the opportunity to show at least a moment of carelessness on the issue of protection of the state, sovereignty, stability and security.

You well know that what a number of nations in the world today are fighting for their independence and the acquisition of statehood. Many of them have all, however, are dissatisfied with their lives because of lack of national statehood. Therefore, every nation which becomes the owner of its homeland and independent state, the issue of socio-economic development of the national interests gain great political and vital importance.

The second direction is the comprehensive improvement of political and legal knowledge and national self-consciousness.

This question is particularly relevant in the age of globalization and high technology.

In recent years, we have witnessed how some of the international bodies through information means and using of an unawareness of the population, especially young people, changed the political and socio-economic processes in some countries.

Destructive forces undermine the greatest achievement of some countries of the world - posing serious threat on their independence. It is obvious, that now decades are needed to find the way out for these countries.

Therefore, the people of Tajikistan should understand the substance of information wars, internal and external political processes, and well comprehend the purpose and nature of government programs.

Society must know that the state government has one strategic goal, that is, upgrade the level and quality of life of the population via strengthening the state independence.

Particularly our youth must properly understand what the selfish interests of external forces are, the targest of which are hiding under the flow of information.

The third direction is to unite the people of the country around the idea of ​​"sovereign Tajikistan - our common homeland".

In terms of ideological and political pluralism, it is extremely difficult and always contentious to achieve such idea. However, it is necessary that at this sensitive time, protection of a free, independent Tajikistan and national unity has to be recognized as a nationwide idea.

Since only such idea is a connection point for the solidarity of the entire people of Tajikistan, regardless of nation, language, religion, creed and political stance.

Therefore, the protection of the national state, its stability and safety will always be our primary concern.

The fourth trend is the development and improvement of the culture of peace and national unity, which should be the essence of the every-day life and activity of our people.

Fortunately, we have achieved peace as the phenomenon of the legal, political and the social reality, and we today are happy to live and do business in the atmosphere of this great gift.

Of course, the participants of this intricate and complex historical process and our elders, who saw the horrors of civil war, are well aware of the importance and the value of peace and unity.

However, now it is the right time for us to raise the importance of peace and national reconciliation as the culture of the people.

At the current stage of development of the country, peace and national reconciliation should be understood not only as the content of the agreement between the two conflicting parties, but should also be taken as a culture and a comprehensive national idea, which would have embraced the peace, unity and peaceful co-existence of all political forces, parties, movements, philosophies, ideologies, religions and faiths of the people living in Tajikistan.

The fifth direction can be called a policy of "relying on the young people." The main essence of this trend is to create opportunities to improve the spiritual and moral development, education and youth activities.

We need to instill in the hearts of the young generation high national sense of patriotism, self-knowledge, the culture of good behavior, self-control and patience, love of science, modern professions and specialties, seriousness, hard work, respect for the rule of law, so that they are able as worthy representatives of the people to represent our beloved motherland on the international arena in the future.

The sixth direction is the protection of the national mentality in terms of a globalization.

Today humanity in the process of globalization is facing a rapid mixture of values, ideas and cultures.

We have never been against the rapprochement of cultures, civilizations and each others knowledge, since it is a natural process.

However, because this junction and proximity occur in political, economic and technological disparities, in most cases unilaterally, countries with a relatively weak economy and less technological development will face a strong impact and the pressure by cultures and the values ​​of the technologically powerful nations.

Some of our genuine national values are undergoing threats and menaces. Given this reality, our culture, national values and the national identity need comprehensive and tangible support of society and the state.

On the other hand, we support an interfaith dialogue and have to use the universal scientific and cultural achievements of the West and the East to strengthen the secular system of the state.

That is our people, along with the protection of their national and religious identity, should have the modern scientific worldview.

Dear friends!

Despite a great number of constructive measures are being undertaken by the state and the government towards ensuring a decent life for the population, there are still many unresolved problems and acute challenges in the country.

However, I do believe in the strong will, the creative power and the eternal wisdom of the glorious Tajik people and declare that in the near future, we all together, thanks to strong commitments and devotion, will successively address those challenges and eliminate existing deficiencies.

All of us have passed and survived through hard days of building our national statehood and today have achieved lasting peace and overall stability, which is a priceless treasure and rare achievement of the Tajik people.

I am convinced that in the future, every honest man and proud sons of the Fatherland will make further efforts to strengthen independence, national unity and protect the integrity of Tajikistan and will make tangible contribution to the solution of problems and on this basis facilitate building a decent living of our fellow-citizens.

With these good and benign intentions in mind, I once again sincerely congratulate the people of Tajikistan, all the compatriots living abroad, and distinguished guests on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the historic and determining Sixteenth Session of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Tajikistan and I wish all of you good health, every success and the wellbeing.

Thank you!

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