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Uzbekistan’s Day of Motherland Defenders

Mehmood Ul Hassan Khan

“We must always remember that the well-being of servicemen is the brightest indicator of the high authority of military service in our country”.

H.E. Islam Kairmov, the President of Uzbekistan

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov1

The Republic of Uzbekistan proudly celebrates its “Day of Motherland Defenders” on January 14 every year. This day the Armed Forces of Uzbekistan were formed. In accordance with the Decree of the President, the Supreme Commander of Armed Forces the Ministry of Defense was founded on 6 September 1991. After signing the decree on January 14, 1992, all the military units deployed on the territory of the country were taken under the jurisdiction of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

President and Supreme Commander of Uzbekistan

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 23nd anniversary of establishment of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

Recognition of the Unlimited Sacrifices of Armed Forces

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.

Formation of Armed Forces

The process of shaping the Armed Forces was launched with the adoption of the Law “On the Foundations of State Independence of the Republic of Uzbekistan”. The legal status of the Armed Forces was determined by the Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan adopted on December 8, 1992: “The Armed Forces of the Republic of Uzbekistan shall be formed to defend the state sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Uzbekistan, as well as the peaceful life and security of its citizens”.

Legislations for the Development of Armed Forces

After gaining independence, Uzbekistan has adopted about ten laws and many regulatory acts raising the national army’s prestige so that the service in the Armed Forces would become not just a constitutional duty of each citizen but one of the prestigious professions in the country.

Different Graceful Activities

Lots of graceful activities officially, privately and individually are arranged to honor the real sons, the soldiers, the defenders of motherland throughout the country. Everyone from top to bottom celebrates that day with zeal and pride.

State Holiday

It is a state holiday in Uzbekistan. 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. It is indeed recognition of their courage, service, bravery and craftsmanship. It promotes sense of ownership, patriotism and dutifulness. It encourages spirits of unity, harmony and above all statehood among the common people.

Dignified Participation

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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.

Reliable Guarantor

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. The Day of Motherland Defenders is celebrated in the country as a nationwide holiday, and the military servicemen and women enjoy common reverence and honor as protectors of peaceful and prosperous life.

Remarkable Development of Armed Forces

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

Armed Forces Installations

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The formation of military command districts, frontier regions, establishment of efficient troops at crucial operations, formation of the United Staff of the Armed Forces that unites the most important military structures have made it possible to set up a defense complex guided by shared goals and tasks in the country.

From December 12, 2008, the Law of the Republic of Uzbekistan “On amendments in articles 18 and 19 of the law ‘On universal military obligation and military service” was promulgated according to which the conscription of citizens for military service will be carried out only once a year. Diversified but integrated measures served the further improvement of conditions of the conscription military service taken by citizens, their fighting and public-political training and mobilization troops’ order.

Compulsory Military Training

Compulsory military training once a year, the expansion of the number of contract military personnel, the introduction of mobilization-reserve military service have further strengthened the efficiency of the armed forces and its common people alike. It connects common people with armed forces and transforms people’s energy into useful spiritual-moral environment. Every year the compulsory military training has now become a genuine school of physical and moral tenacity that shapes the firm willpower and character as well as high human qualities in the youth in the country.

Staffing of National Military

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Consistent policies and efforts have been institutionalized aimed at staffing the national military with highly professional cadres, bolstering the training levels, knowledge and skills of the servicemen. Military exercises and classes are conducted on regular basis 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.

Comparative Advantage

Competition based compulsory military training is an important factor in staffing the armed forces with young men with superb physical training and intellectual abilities. Owing to this, soldiers grasp profoundly the curricula on combat training and application of cutting-edge machinery and technologies.

Growing Aspiration for Military Services

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As a result, the interest and aspiration for military service has been growing among young people. From the very childhood, they are engaged in sports, thoroughly attain knowledge, and thus develop both physically and intellectually. It also gives them edge in getting admission in the universities.

Enhanced Social and Living Conditions of Service-Men

The government is doing its levels best to improve the social and living conditions of military personnel. In particular, new residential homes for military men were commissioned in 2014 in many regions of the country. Due to which thousands of military families celebrated the New Year in new homes.

New Training and Combat Tasks Staff Structures of Military Units

Now, the new training and combat tasks staff structures of military units and military-training educational institutions, the teaching system of personnel and officers have been modernized. Tashkent General Military School, Chirchik Tank School, and Samarkand Motor-Car Higher Military School are acting as a multiple disciplinary institutions. A special department for officer operators training was established within Tashkent Technical University. In 1994, Jizzak Higher Military Aviation College was established, and in 1995 an Academy of the Armed Forces, the first of its kind in Central Asia, was set up.

Sergeant Training Schools

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An advanced system of the establishment of sergeant training schools (STS) was introduced in military districts in 2000. These training schools are totally new military training institutions, which apply modern methods of training. The purpose of sergeant training schools, where the study period was increased from 5 to 9 months, is to train sergeants of a new type, infusing them with high spiritual-moral and leadership qualities.

Initiatives of the President of Uzbekistan

At the initiative of the President of Uzbekistan, sergeant training schools are initially equipped with training facilities, computers, material resources, and weapons. Graduates make a well-deserved contribution to the creation of a modernized professional army and increase of its military preparedness. Different presidential address underlines that the sergeant staff of the Armed Forces is becoming an important factor in ensuring military and political preparedness, maintaining a healthy moral and ethical environment as well as military discipline in the units.

Integrated Initiatives

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In Uzbekistan the period of military service was reduced from 18 to 12 months in 2003. Another kind of military service i.e. “mobilization call-up reserve service” was created. These efforts are started to boost the process of improving the conditions for youth in carrying out their military duty to protect their country. A call-up of citizens for service for a fixed period is carried out along with the State Testing Center through competitive conscription selection panel. Uzbekistan is now among the few countries, where military call-up is conducted on a competitive basis. Consequently, the Armed Forces are staffed with most prepared youth that have a high level of knowledge and physical training.

Development of Armed Forces

Armed Forces of Uzbekistan has developed its self a long way of formation and reforming turning into one of the most modern armies in the Central Asian region. It managed to achieve such a grand success owing to the planned and consecutive government’s policy directed at creation of an organizational infrastructure able to provide the all the staff of the Armed Forces with necessary material and technical means. Right from the beginning a great attention has been paid to the provision of servicemen with the proper medical service and high-quality nutrition. All military units are now equipped with all modern medical technologies enabling diagnostics of different diseases’ complexity; military depots are provided with laboratory equipment enabling quality analysis of the delivered food products.


Modern military towns are being constructed or have already commissioned all across the republic. They are able to provide servicemen with full complex of municipal and consumer services. Now owing to the mortgage crediting system and support of the state, servicemen received an effective mechanism allowing them to purchase comfortable dwelling.

Salient Features of H.E. Islam Karimov, the President of Uzbekistan’s Speech 2015


H.E. Islam Karimov the President and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of Uzbekistan congratulated soldiers and sergeants, officers and generals and the last but not the least, veterans of the Armed Forces on the Day of Motherland Defenders January 14, 2015. He termed it as landmark day in the national history of Uzbekistan. He praised the remarkable role of armed forces of Uzbekistan in the process of modern democratic Uzbekistan. The President Islam Kairmov labelled them “reliable guarantor of ensuring independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, peaceful and tranquil life of Homeland”. He was of the opinion that the might and capabilities of each state are judged on their combat efficiency and combat readiness.

Establishment of Armed Forces of Uzbekistan

In his well-written speech, the President said “we refused to directly copy the inherited and obsolete experience of military development”. We have comprehensively understood the concrete and real geostrategic and geopolitical conditions, the nature of modern wars and armed conflicts, and proceeded from the analysis of specifics of possible theater of war operations of the Central Asian region, as well as leaned upon our primordial national peculiarities and traditions”.

Importance of Integrated Reforms

The President upheld that diversified but integrated military reforms played very important role in the establishment and further development of armed forces of Uzbekistan. He stated that

“The effective and consistent implementation of the stage-by-stage and interrelated program of reforms based on in-depth study and use of the advanced foreign experience of military development, organization of the service and combat activity of troops, and achievements of modern military art became mostly a decisive condition in the process of establishing our army”.

Most Important Priority

Islam Karimov claimed that his most important priority remained to deepen the interaction with defense agencies of foreign states. He has established and is expanding the mutually beneficial partnership relations, and implementing the annual plans of bilateral military and military-technical cooperation with many of them. It is now paying its dividends, he added.

Modernization of Troops

He talked about the different plans for the development of the Armed Forces. “We consistently carry out measures to modernize and reequip the troops with the newest armament and hardware, including the air defense systems and helicopters, armored weaponry, artillery systems, communication tools, personal and group protection equipment” he further stated.

Improvement the System of Military Cadres Training

The President talked about significance and continuous work to improve the system of military cadres training at the Academy of Armed Forces, military colleges and sergeant schools based on the latest methodologies that ensure application of innovative forms and methods of teaching with the use of cutting-edge achievements in the area of advanced information and communication technologies.

Professional Skills of the Officer and Sergeant Personnel

Islam Kairmov said adoption and in depth analysis of foreign system of training and organizing the military service in the armies of the advanced foreign countries played a big positive role in raising the professional skills of the officer and sergeant personnel.

Diversified Qualities

The President thanked to the practical measures implemented in this sphere, the officer personnel has been steadily raising its mental outlook and erudition, has high professional, spiritual and moral qualities, capable to think logically actively applying the unconventional approaches in resolving tasks they face. Without any exaggeration, the sergeants have truly become a reliable and irreplaceable helpers and buttress of officers, and caring leaders for our soldiers.

Main Tasks of Defense Development

He stressed that defense development remains to be further extension and improvement of the system of operation and combat training of command bodies and troops.

He further explained

“The modern exercises are completely different from those that we held in the early years of our independence. From year to year the exercises, which are held in the conditions maximally approximated to the combat ones, allow us to undertake a critical analysis of the entire system of troops training, assess the capabilities of each battalion and platoon, as well as expediency and adequacy of the chosen ways of accomplishing combat tasks proceeding from the interchangeability of sub-units and mastering by the personnel of related professions”.

Army Service: A Special Meaning for Young Generation

“It is mostly important to broadly apply the experience accumulated by us in the course of forming and reforming the national army in terms of organizing a comprehensive and purposeful work with all categories of servicemen and pre-conscription youth. The service in the army acquires a special meaning for our young generation and becomes ever more prestigious” he added.

Military Services Benefits

The honorable President pinpointed many socio-economic benefits associated with military services in Uzbekistan. He also valued their services which is now role model to young generation. It nurtured elements of courage, firmness, high feeling of patriotism and selfless love to the Homeland.

Services of Young People

The President acknowledged the services of the entire generation of young people grew and firmly stood on their feet in Uzbekistan, who went through a comprehensive training, obtained army tenacity and are ready to stand up anytime to defend the Motherland.

Privileges to Services Men

He told that the implementation of state programs aimed at ensuring servicemen with housing, improving their social, living and service conditions maintains a special significance. Each serviceman, who devoted his life to this courageous profession, must be firmly confident that his problems won’t be left unaddressed and well-being of his family is reliably guaranteed.

Year of Attention and Care for the Elder Generation

The President has already announced 2015 as the “Year of Attention and Care for the Elder Generation” which requires of us to unconditionally implement the adopted governmental resolutions and state programs aimed at further reinforcing material and social support of participants of war and veterans of the Armed Forces, show them a comprehensive care and simple humane attention.

Valuable Services of Veterans & Teachers

The honorable President recognized the valuable services rendered by veterans and teachers who are continuing to actively participate in the development of state, sharing with their unique experience and conveying their knowledge to the new generation of defenders of Homeland.

Threats to International Security & Stability

He mentioned the emerging geo-political and geo-strategic trends in the international security and stability system. He rightly observed that international security and stability system is based on use of force in resolving emerging conflicts, intensification of geopolitical competition for the control over raw resources and communications, proliferation of nuclear technologies and weapon of mass destruction, stirring up of forces of international terrorism and creeping expansion of extremism, aggravation of inter-ethnic and inter-religious confrontation.

Afghanistan beyond 2015

As an experienced political scientist the President also mentioned the drawdown of the ISAF peacekeeping troops from Afghanistan and its regional spillovers in the post 2015. According to him it would be a serious trial for all countries of the Central Asian region. As the experience of Iraq vividly testifies, any vacuum emerging in Afghanistan may be filled by various destructive and terrorist groups capable in a short period of time to disseminate their destructive influence to vast territories of the region, he further added.

Nature of International Conflicts and Armed Forces of Uzbekistan

He said that unconventional challenges are radically altering the picture of international conflicts. At present, the significant threat is posed by the information and psychological impact aimed at undermining the roots of our army, mainly, through the attempts to exert influence to its moral foundations, as well as usage of modern Internet technologies to imbibe the destructive ideas and notions to the minds of our youth which are absolutely run counter to our rich and creative culture, spiritual values and traditions.

Preserve Vigilance

The honorable President rightly stressed the need to have constant vigilance due to emerging geo-political and geo-strategic scenarios in the region and around the globe. He warned the way to a feeling of self-complacency but to continue the resolute efforts to further reform the Armed Forces, raise their readiness to suppress all attempts to provoke tension in our borders, timely and worthily repulse any aggressive acts aimed against the path of development chosen by us.

Peace-Loving Policy

The President maintained the importance of having a peace-loving policy in the country. “Our Military Doctrine has a defensive nature and reinforcement of the country’s Armed Forces is firstly aimed at protecting its state sovereignty, territorial integrity, peace and tranquility of our people. Our Defense Doctrine doesn’t envisage participation of our army in the military actions and operations beyond the Republic of Uzbekistan” he added.

Concluding Remarks

The Republic of Uzbekistan celebrates its 23rd Day of Motherland Defenders on January 14, 2015 every year. It shows its commitment towards the betterment and further development of its Armed Forces and common people alike. It upholds the importance of their dignified duties for the protection of the country, constitution, community and people. It reflects the true spirits of a patriotic solider who is always ready to sacrifice his precious life for the dignity of his beloved country.

Day of Motherland Defenders is the Defence Day of Uzbekistan which plays very important role in promoting holy spirits among the young generation. By using the golden words of the President of Uzbekistan I conclude

“It speaks and expresses the words of a sincere gratitude for a selfless service to all servicemen, the privates and sergeants, officers and generals, as well as the veterans of the Armed Forces, civil specialists, and all those who have devoted their fate to implementing a noble and responsible duty of defending Homeland”.

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