Senior U.S. Delegation in Astana for the Central and South Asia Regional Conference on Countering Violent Extremism

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
June 26, 2015

The Republic of Kazakhstan will host the South and Central Asia Regional Conference on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) June 29-30 in Astana, Kazakhstan. Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection Gil Kerlikowske will lead the high-level U.S. delegation to the conference. He will be accompanied by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Eileen O’Connor, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Robert Berschinski, other U.S. State Department and USAID officials, and representatives of city and federal law enforcement agencies.

Ministers, senior government officials, and civil society representatives from 13 South and Central Asian countries will discuss ways to counter violent extremism within the framework of good governance and the rule of law, especially through partnerships with civil society. The summit aims to facilitate the sharing of best practices and the development of concrete CVE initiatives, and several countries from the region are expected to adopt and announce their commitment to implement these CVE initiatives at a follow-on leaders’ event to take place on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in September.

The conference in Astana follows the successful conference on “Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism in South and Central Asia: the Role of Civil Society” for nongovernmental organizations from the South and Central Asia region, held June 23-25 in Istanbul, Turkey. Both conferences build upon the February 19, 2015 White House Summit to Counter Violent Extremism, which outlined an ambitious agenda to address the root causes and drivers of violent extremism.