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Italian president Mattarella visits Uzbekistan

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Italian president Mattarella visits Uzbekistan

Photo: Press Service of the President

Italian President Sergio Mattarella’s visit to Uzbekistan starts today.

The 3-day visit follows Mattarella’s trip to South Korea. On November 10th, Mattarella will meet with Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to discuss investment protection and cooperation in science and culture. The leaders will also discuss educational exchange and assess potential technological and economic cooperation at Turin Polytechnic University. Mattarella’s visit will conclude at Samarkand, an important cultural and political hub where both countries collaborate on a significant archeology project.

Before Mattarella’s visit, Shavkat visited Italy and agreed to upgrade the relationship to a strategic partnership where more political, defense, economic, science, and other cooperation will take place. The enhancement of the bilateral relationship signals mistrust between Uzbekistan and Russia due to the war in Ukraine. Post-Soviet states including Uzbekistan abstained on a U.N. General Assembly resolution condemning Russia’s annexation of Ukraine. Earlier this year, only 6 out of 15 post-soviet states remains in the Russian version of NATO.

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Mattarella’s visit will focus on facilitating negotiations that are already underway rather than introducing something brand new. As the Russia-Ukraine war continues, Uzbekistan will continue to seek security guarantees outside of Russia. Italy is well on its way to deepening its ties with post-Soviet states such as Kazakhstan and Tajikistan. If those collaborations are beneficial, Italy could serve as the pathway for Uzbekistan and post-Soviet states to collaborate with the West in the future.

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