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Uzbekistan’s Day of Defenders of the Motherland

Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan


In Uzbekistan, 14 January is widely marked as the Day of Motherland Defenders. Every man of the nation celebrates that day with zeal and pride. It is the day of national real heroes, the defenders of the motherland. The Day of defenders of Motherland is the great state holiday and it is observed in broad and spectacular way. This day the ranks of military men in full dress are lined up on the main square of the country in order to accept congratulations and awards from the leader of the country.

Celebration of Armed Forces Day in Islamabad


The Uzbekistan Embassy in Islamabad held a reception in connection with Armed Forces Day that is knwn as the Day of Defenders of the Motherland of Uzbekistan in the capital of Islamabad on January 30, 2014. Day of Defenders of the Motherland in Uzbekistan is officially celebrates all over the country on January 14, the day, when Armed Forces of Uzbekistan were established.
The Ambassador of Uzbekistan in Pakistan held a reception in the honour of diplomats, high civil and military bureaucrats and leading personalities of capital of Pakistan. It was an impressive event where documentary about the Defenders of the Motherland, the Uzbek Army was also screened and people showed a great interest in the professionalism of Uzbek Army.

Diversified State’s activities


Uzbekistan and the President of Uzbekistan and Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Islam Karimov sent congratulation message to representatives of Armed Forces in connection with celebrations of the Day of Defenders of Homeland and the 22nd anniversary of establishment of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

The President of Uzbekistan signed a decree on 10 January 2014 occasioned to the Day of Motherland Defenders, whereby a group of personnel in law enforcement agencies, ministries of defense and emergency situations is awarded orders and medals. At the official meeting in the Turkiston Palace, they were handed these high awards of the Motherland.

The representatives of the Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Internal Affairs, National Security Service and other institutions participate in this ceremony. The moment, when the marching of all force divisions begins along the square to the sound of military orchestra, is particularly colorful. Participants of the parade also lay the wreaths to the monument of Independence.

“Uzbekiston Yagona Vatanim”


This year, the Day of Motherland Defenders is celebrated in Uzbekistan under a slogan “Uzbekiston Yagona Vatanim!” The public council under the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Uzbekistan conducts numerous meetings and spiritual-enlightenment events in military units and subdivisions, across the regions, towns and districts, villages and mahallas. Uzbekistan nation highly values the peace and harmony in the country and conscious of being part of the cause of preserving this invaluable good and deeply convinced that Uzbekistan is our single Motherland is given a bright confirmation time and again at these events.

Contributory Role of Armed Forces


Uzbekistan’s national armed forces constitute a reliable guarantor of the peaceful life and harmony reigning in the country, the security of the nation and the inviolability of its borders. Thus, the Day of Motherland Defenders is celebrated extensively in Uzbekistan as a nationwide holiday, and the military servicemen and women enjoy common reverence and honor as protectors of our peaceful and prosperous life.

Historical Perspectives

In accordance with the Decree of the head of state, the Ministry of Defense was founded on 6 September 1991. In line with the resolution of the leader of the nation signed January 14, 1992, all the military units deployed on the territory of the country were taken under the jurisdiction of the Republic of Uzbekistan. That day laid the foundation for Uzbekistan national armed forces.

Institutionalization of Perfection


For the past years, Uzbekistan Armed Forces have been perfected both in organizational and structural terms. The agility and combat capacities of subdivisions has been boosted, so has the physical and spiritual-moral training of servicemen. Military units and subdivisions have been provided modern weaponry and combat machinery.

Significance Day of Defenders of the Motherland

Every year, the country-wide celebration within the country and around the globe has great significance. It shows the expansion of the number of contract military personnel, the introduction of mobilization-reserve military service and further transformation in the appearance of the armed forces and the last but not the least enhances spiritual-moral environment in the military. It also shapes the firm willpower and character as well as high human qualities in the youth as well.

Consistent Efforts

Multidimensional consistent efforts have been carried out aimed at staffing the national military with highly professional cadres, bolstering the training levels, knowledge and skills of the servicemen in the country. Military exercises and classes are conducted with the use of advanced scientific and technological achievements. Higher military education institutions train officer corps able to thoroughly assess any threats and make operational decisions, and those wielding modern knowledge and high moral-ethical qualities.

Aspiration for Military Service

Regular ceremony of the Day of the Defenders of the Motherland enhances/builds interest and aspiration for military service among young people. From the very childhood, they are engaged in sports, thoroughly attain knowledge, and thus develop both physically and intellectually.

Different Development Projects for Armed Forces

Many development projects are being carried out in the country for the welfare of the armed forces. On completion it will further improve their social and living conditions. In particular, new residential homes for service people were commissioned on the eve of the New Year 2014 in many regions of the country. Hence, thousands of military families celebrated the New Year in new homes.

Uzbek President congratulates Armed Forces

President of Uzbekistan and Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Islam Karimov sent congratulation message to representatives of Armed Forces in connection with celebrations of the Day of Defenders of Homeland and the 22nd anniversary of establishment of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

Salient Features of Speech

President of Uzbekistan and Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Islam Karimov congratulated the armed forces of Uzbekistan. He spoke highly about the different rigorous reforms for the wellbeing of his armed forces not confined to training, modernization, combat capabilities and above all creation of a mobile national army. He also mentioned the significance of the revision of the organizational and staff structure within the different departments and sub-division of the armed forces.

President Islam Karimov pinpointed the different socio-economic, geo-political and geo-strategic emerging trends in and around the region and asserted the need to have ever-ready and vigilant armed forces in order to successfully cope with all the internal and external security and non-state threats.

The head of the Uzbekistan state also talked about the different developmental projects for the social protection and better housing facilities for the armed forces of the country. He also stated that armed forces must be ready for any conflict resolution activity in the post-2014 in the region. He emphasized the further modernization, training, restructuring, reforming and strengthening the Defense Power. He elaborated the different main tasks of the armed forces of the country in the times of peace and conflict.

The Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces talked about the strategic importance of strong armed forces in the country and stressing the need to have further “Interoperability” among the defenders of the motherland and its different divisions and sub-divisions. He said that local defense production paved the way of self-reliance and guaranteed national sovereignty.

Comprehensive training and multilevel system and of training junior commanders was the crux of his devotional speech. He upheld the importance of training, and better working relationship between the superiors and juniors in the armed forces.

He termed pre-conscription training of future soldiers important for the armed forces and the nation as well as. He advised the proper and optimal utility of the mass media in the country for protecting the best interests of the country and its armed forces.

“It gives me an enormous pleasure to congratulate you from the bottom of my heart on the most important landmark event in the life of our country the Day of Defenders of Homeland and the 22nd anniversary of establishment of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan,”

Rigorous Reforms

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov highlighted the different rigorous reforms and policies taken for the further consolidation and development of the armed forces of Uzbekistan which are given below as:

(a) Creation of the Mobile National Army

Creation of the mobile national army well-equipped with cutting-edge armament and techniques that meets the highest requirements and standards capable to effectively and reliably ensure the security and territorial integrity of the country, protect the peaceful and tranquil life of our people has been accomplished in the country.

(b) Radically Revision of the Organizational and Staff Structure

The President further elaborated that a special attention was paid to radically revise the organizational and staff structure, as well as taking into account the nature of possible theater of war operations establish the modern and effective system of operational strategic control of the Armed Forces, improve the interaction of branches of troops and equip them with the latest techniques and armament, change the essence of combat and educational training, and significantly enhance the social support of servicemen,”.

(c) Improved Combat Capabilities

Talking on the importance of combat facilities and training in the wake of emerging complicated and complex geo-political and geo-strategic trends in the country and around the region he explained that

“Taking into consideration the rapidly changing and ambiguous military-political situation and possible complication of the state of affairs in the region, the combat capabilities, firepower, mobility and manageability of units and subdivisions of the Armed Forces have tangibly increased.

(d) Paramount Importance of Armed Forces

The President was of the view that armed forces has great importance because of

“The growing radicalism, conflicts and confrontations taking place in the modern world and our closest vicinity, ongoing war in Afghanistan and uncertainty in its resolution, stirring up of terrorism and religious extremism, expanding scales of aggressive drug trafficking, increasing threats in our immediate proximity to our borders all of this cannot but raise in us a deep feeling of concern and alarm,”

(e) Post-2014 Scenario

The Uzbekistan head of the state envisioned that

“The forthcoming drawdown of the ISAF peacemaking troops from Afghanistan which may lead to yet greater tensions in our southern borders and adjacent territories may prove a serious trial for all of the countries of the Central Asian region.

(f) Maintenance of high vigilance and constant readiness

“These complex and unpredictable processes today require all of us to maintain high vigilance and constant readiness to undertake preemptive decisive actions in terms of averting the attempts to provoke tension on our borders and ensuring the capability of the Armed Forces to give a timely and adequate repulse to any aggressive actions aimed against our country.

(g) Further Reforming and Strengthening the Defense Power

President Islam Karimov underlined that

“In this context, given the unfolding rather complex situation I deem it necessary to continue further reforming and strengthening the defense power of our army, its combat potential and readiness to protect the sovereignty of the country, secure borders and peaceful life of its citizens,”.

Main Task of the Armed Forces

He pinpointed the main task of the armed forces and its associated wings/departments to be vigilant

“The main task of the Armed Forces, Ministry of Defense, General Staff and staffs of military districts shall be to carry out the in-depth, purposeful and systemic analysis, and predict the rapidly changing situation on adjacent territories and the region as a whole, timely locate the probable risks in terms of possible stirring up of activities of the terrorist and extremist forces capable to gravely complicate the situation on our borders.

(h) Constant Readiness of Subdivisions

“On this basis it is important to continue improving the system of shaping defenses of our country taking into account the peculiarities of each operational direction while paying a special attention to implementing the efficient measures to ensure constant readiness of subdivisions of military districts and frontier troops to engage in well-coordinated joint combat operations in terms of preempting emerging security threats to the country, and firstly, in the frontier areas. In these circumstances a decisive role must be accorded to comprehensive interchangeability and high level of interaction of subdivisions involved in protecting and safeguarding the State border, as well as their joint combat training,” Islam Karimov said.

(i) Critical Assessment

Uzbek leader said: “It is extremely important to undertake a critical assessment by the command of the Armed Forces and military districts of the current system of educational and combat training of troops which must adequately meet the real unfolding military and political situation in the region in the nearest and midterm perspective.”

(j) Development of Interoperability

“A special attention must be paid to practicing various models and versions of interoperability of the frontier troops and the units of Ministry of Defense, assault-helicopter and special subdivisions, as well as other types of troops engaged in joint actions with detailed examination of the best practices of foreign countries.

(k) Further Modernization

“The main task must remain full and timely implementation of adopted plans and programs on equipping the units and subdivisions with modern types of armament and military hardware which allow to significantly enhancing their combat capabilities,” Islam Karimov said.

(l) Importance of Local Defense Production

“It is necessary to intensify the efforts on developing the local production and repair basis to maintain combat readiness, as well as establishing joint ventures on manufacturing the new and modernizing the available types of armament and military hardware.

(m) Comprehensive Training

“We need to further enhance the comprehensive training of combat platoons and groups taking into account the growing requirements to commanders of these subdivisions and professional training of the entire personnel.

“In training platoons and groups a serious attention must be paid to imparting to command staff of firm skills on comprehensively assessing and analyzing the situation, making non-standard decisions and skillfully managing subdivisions in accomplishing independent combat tasks, mastering by personnel of related professions, new military hardware and armament to ensure the interchangeability of specialists and high congruence of subdivisions,” Uzbek President noted.

“In this context, it is crucially important to effectively train the well-erudite, modern thinking and intellectually developed military cadres with high professional, spiritual and moral qualities capable to effectively carry out the set tasks in the modern conditions of fast combat.

(n) Multilevel System of Training Junior Commanders

“It is important to continue and deepen our work to enhance training of the sergeant corps. We need to implement a set of measures to further develop the sole multilevel system of training junior commanders which envisages comprehensive renewal of the activity of sergeant schools in line with new modern requirements. The professionally trained sergeant corps must actually turn into a pillar and pivot of our army on whom mostly depend the moral and psychological climate in each military unit,” he said.

(o) Social Protection of Servicemen

“The unremitting attention must be paid to addressing the issues of social protection of servicemen and their family members, full implementation of adopted state programs on providing them with comfortable housing, modern living conditions and quality medical servicing envisaging further increase of budget funds for these purposes,” Uzbek leader added.

(p) Pre-Conscription Training of Future Soldiers

“Today there is no need to underline the significance of the pre-conscription training of future soldiers and officers of our army, as well as their conscious choice of the future hard profession. In this regard, it is very important to intensify the work on holding the military patriotic events, improve erudition, knowledge of our history and tenacity of the future soldiers at educational institutions, workplaces and makhallas (neighborhood communities). The broad layers of population, including servicemen and veterans of the Armed Forces, must be involved in those events,” Islam Karimov said.

(q) Proper & Optimal Utility of Mass Media

“It is also significant to actively use the capabilities of mass media and national segment of the Internet to inform citizens about military service, military cadres training and large-scale reforms in the army. Meanwhile, we should avoid formalism and superficial approach. And we should also nurture among our youth the deep feelings of love to Homeland, pride for its Armed Forces and respect to military service. The Public council at the Ministry of Defense, representatives of public, culture, arts and sports must play a special role in implementing these vital and long-term tasks,” he stated.

Concluding Remarks

Uzbekistan’s Day of Defenders of the Motherland is celebrated on January 14 every year. It is day to recognize the sacrifices of armed forces of the country. It is the icon of its bravery, courage and determination. It is the acknowledgment of its devotion towards national sovereignty. It shows its submission towards national cause of independence, pride and patriotism. It stands for national development and protection of peace. It shows ever-readiness and highest level of vigilance on the part of armed forces. It guarantees the vested socio-economic, geo-political and geo-strategic interest of the Uzbekistan. Long live the high spirits of Armed Forces of UZBEKISTAN.

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