Democratic Process in Central Asia and its Impact on European Union and Central Asia Relations
Vijay Kumar Bhatia (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India) [BIO]
Central Asia is a region of ancient civilization. Its people have made a tangible contribution to human progress, especially in astrology, medicine, mathematics, philosophy, architecture, handicraft, irrigated agriculture and other fields. The disintegration of former Soviet Union and the subsequent emergence of independent Central Asian republics changed the balance of power in the region.
Due to its geographical proximity to Europe, China, Russia, Middle East and South Asia the region emerged as a distinct geopolitical entity stimulating global attention and interests. After attaining independence these republics establish Constitution according to the principles of democracy. The Constitutions of Central Asian countries provided for a presidential system with separation of powers between executive, legislative and judicial branches, however in practice there is no democracy in these republics and the Presidents have dominated political life of their respective countries.
European Union foreign policy goals in this region includes fostering stability, developing free market and economies, trade and transport through Eurasian corridor. An over arching European Union priority is to encourage democracy and to discourage attempts by authoritarian regimes or group to block or subvert progress towards these goals In this paper an attempt has been made to understand the impact of European Union on the working of democratic institutions in the Central Asian region.
The paper deals with the changing nature of European Union involvement in Central Asia region. The paper will also analyze the European Union relationship with the countries of Central Asia since the dissolution of USSR, its vision and policy in the region.