Presidents Islam Karimov of Uzbekistan, Nursultan Nazarbaev of Kazakhstan, and Askar Akaev of Kyrgyzstan met on July 24 in Cholpon-Ata, on Issyk-Kul Lake in Kyrgyzstan, for a regular summit of the Central Asian Union — comprised of the three countries. The presidents reviewed preparations for the joint military exercise scheduled to be held in the region in September. The exercise will involve troops from their three countries, as well as from NATO countries, and countries aspiring to NATO membership. The presidents also endorsed Akaev’s proposal to convene an international conference in Bishkek for settling the Afghanistan conflict. Karimov made an impassioned appeal for the immediate dispatch of UN peacekeeping troops to Afghanistan on the Bosnia model.
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