Publication: Monitor Volume: 4 Issue: 170

President Islam Karimov paid a state visit to Israel from September 14-17, the first such visit by a Central Asian president since those five countries became independent in 1991. Karimov made a point of meeting with Israel’s leaders in Jerusalem. Political talks focused on joint efforts to resist terrorism and the spread of Islamic fundamentalism. Talks with Israeli business representatives explored Israeli investment in, and technical assistance to, Uzbekistan’s irrigation system and food processing sector. Karimov also met with representatives of the Bukharan Jews, thousands of whom moved to Israel since 1991. Bukharan Jews have lived on the present territory of Uzbekistan for some 2,000 years.

In the West Bank town of Ramallah, Karimov met with Palestinian Authority leader Yasir Arafat, who has his own differences with Islamic radicals (International agencies, Radio Tashkent, Voice of Palestine, September 14 through 16).–VS

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