His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan’s April trip to Moscow a significant event, says a Russian expert on Central Asia

 “… we need the Aga Khan [more] than he needs us …

 

The fact that the Russian authorities invited the Aga Khan to Moscow is a significant event.

 

Apparently Russia recognizes his role as supreme authority who can influence the course of events in the region.”

 

– Andrey Dubnov, a Russian expert on Central Asia

 

On April 20, His Highness the Aga Khan, Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslims and chairman and founder of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) met Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, to discuss areas of cooperation and mutual interest.

“You are a good friend who often visits us. We highly appreciate your views on Afghanistan and also on many other modern issues. We treasure your sagacious and wise views as you are a man with great experience.

 

We see that your actions are guided not only by a desire to protect the interests of Ismailis around the world, but also to help settle the acute international issues that have been accumulating for the past decade. We hope to have a useful meeting.”

 

– Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs

 

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at talks with Prince Karim Aga Khan IV, Spiritual Leader of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslim Community, Moscow, April 20, 2017
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks at talks with Prince Karim Aga Khan IV, Spiritual Leader of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslim Community, Moscow, April 20, 2017

 

His Highness the Aga Khan, for his part, said that cooperation with Russia was important as far as the situation in Central Asia was concerned.

About 20 million Shia Ismaili Muslims live in different countries around the world, Russian news website Gazeta.ru.

In Tajikistan, Shia Ismaili Muslims compactly live in the Gorno Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO).

Ismaili Muslims live on both sides of border between Tajikistan’s GBAO and Afghan Badakhshan Province. “In this context, we need the Aga Khan [more] than he needs us,” Andrey Dubnov, a Russian expert on Central Asia, told Gazeta.ru in an interview.

Today, during the spring season of intensification of terrorist activity in Afghanistan, Russia has needed once again the Aga-Khan’s assistance in Gorno Badakhshan, Dubnov was cited as saying by Gazeta.tu. “The Afghan part of this region evokes especial concern of security services because Islamic State (IS) terrorist group is forcing the Taliban radical movement out of here (both organizations are banned in Russia),” Russian expert said.

“The fact that the Russian authorities invited the Aga Khan to Moscow is a significant event. Apparently Russia recognizes his role as supreme authority who can influence the course of events in the region,” Dubnov added.

Contacts between the Ag Khan and the Russian authorities have been developing not for the first decade. Russian President Vladimir Putin met with His Highness the Aga Khan at least one time – in 2002.

His Highness the Aga Khan met with President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin on April 30, 2002. The two leaders discussed the potential for expanding activities of AKDN within the Russian Federation and reviewed together the context in which AKDN has established and grown its development initiatives in Central Asia and Afghanistan.

 

His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan meets Russian President Putin at the Kremlin 2002-04-30

 

Operating in Tajikistan since 1992, AKDN draws on a strong base of experience in working with mountain societies. It works in all regions of the country and employs over 3,500 people through its operations and investments.

Read the complete story at Asia Plus | Russia pays homage to His Highness the Aga Khan

Photos from the Ismailimail archives

His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan meeting Prime Minster Viktor Chernomyrdin in Moscow, 1995. (Image credit: The Ismaili Canada)
From the Ismailimail archives. His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan meeting Prime Minster Viktor Chernomyrdin in Moscow, 1995. (Image credit: The Ismaili Canada)

 

From the Ismailimail archives. Berlin, Germany, 3 October 2005: His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan receives Die Quadriga 2005 Prize. Left to right - Dr Helmut Kohl, former German Chancellor; Mikhail Gorbatschev, former President of the USSR; His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan; William Benjamin Mkapa, President of the Republic of Tanzania. (Image credit: AKDN/Gary Otte)
From the Ismailimail archives. Berlin, Germany, 3 October 2005: His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan receives Die Quadriga 2005 Prize. Left to right – Dr Helmut Kohl, former German Chancellor; Mikhail Gorbatschev, former President of the USSR; His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan; William Benjamin Mkapa, President of the Republic of Tanzania. (Image credit: AKDN/Gary Otte)

 


Research, Insight & Perspective by A. Maherali


 

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One thought

  1. The last few articles on His Highness The Aga Khan have been profoundly important to be recognised as a Voice to be Heard and his role in trying to achieve PEACE in the this ever increasing world of devastation and senseless violence and many recognizing what the Holy Prophet had said some 1400 years ago which have all come true. I wish The Aga Khan the very best in achieving this goal and to be heard and recognized by many more and join him.

    Like

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