Multilateral Training Enhances Border Management in Central Asia

People walk along a bridge unveiled at the Tajik-Afghan border in Nizhny Pyandzh, Tajikistan, Aug. 26, 2007. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: April Wells serves as a Staff Assistant in the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs.

At a small compound not far from the airport in Dushanbe, an Afghan, a Tunisian, and a Tajik official sit side-by-side listening to a lecture on weapons smuggling interdiction. As the American instructor’s words are simultaneously translated into Dari, English, and Tajik, the students furiously scribble notes. They will have to present research projects on this material in the near future. They do not want to be caught unprepared.

The students are but three of 41 border management and/or security officials from Central Asia and beyond who have come to the OSCE Border Management Staff Collegein Tajikistan to learn how to fight terrorism, human trafficking, illicit drug trade, and many other threats that governments face as they manage long, porous borders. More Afghans have… more »

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert O. Blake, Jr. Delivers Remarks at a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) discussion on “The Role of Central Asia in Afghanistan” on July 12, 2012. [Go to for more video and text transcript.]

Tech Forum Central Asia Spotlights Innovation for Social Good

A participant poses for a photograph at the 2012 Tech Forum Central Asia in Almaty, Kazakhstan, June 16, 2012. [Photograph Courtesy of Tech Forum Central Asia/ Used by Permission]

About the Author: Joe Witters serves as a Public Affairs Officer in the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs.

Eight months of planning meetings and conference calls between U.S. Consulate Almaty and Washington D.C. led to three days of intense hands-on training and interactive discussion between technology experts, young entrepreneurs, and civil society representatives from eight South and Central Asian countries June 14-16 in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Tech Forum Central Asia (TFCA) was not your typical conference where participants sat and listened to speakers. Rather, it was a high-tech, interactive social entrepreneurship event focused on youth empowerment. 

If I could sum up my experience in one word it would be “inspired.” I was inspired by the technologists who led training sessions. Hanny Kusumawati, from Indonesia, shared her experiences with “crowdfunding.” She founded Coin A Chance, which makes use of extra change people in Indonesia often discard and collects it to help… more »