Will old passports be invalid from 24 November 2015?

The roundtable on Strengthening Integrated Passport Control in Tajikistan was held on 29 August 2012 in the premises of the OSCE Office in Tajikistan (OiT). It has involved the participation of relevant staff of the MFA Consular Department, the MIA Registration and Visa Department, the NCB Interpol of the MIA, the State Committee on National Security, the General Prosecutor’s Office, and the members of the Police Reform Steering Group. 

The project proposals on Strengthening Integrated Passport Control: “The OSCE-INTERPOL: Support to INTERPOL in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan” and “Enhancing Identity Management and Travel Documents Security in Tajikistan” were discussed at the roundtable. 

Opening the round table, the Deputy Head of the OSCE OiT, Mr. Hans Peter Larsen has noted that “the OSCE Office in Tajikistan, functioning within its mandate, attaches a significant importance to issues of protection, simplification and harmonization of travel documents issuance system in Tajikistan.” That is why the OSCE has chaired a tripartite activity of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and International Organization for Migration (IOM) on enhancing identification data management and on securing travel documents in Tajikistan.” According to Mr. Larsen, the projects will be implemented within the Memorandum of Understanding on Police Reform between the OSCE and Tajikistan, which is a pillar of the OSCE Police Reform Program in Tajikistan. 

Christopher Hornek, Assistant Programme Officer of the OSCE Action against Terrorism Unit (ATU), while presenting the projects noted that the “projects were developed as per request of the Government of Tajikistan, which were preceded by the studies conducted by the OSCE experts from 4 to 9 October 2010 at 10 Border Control Points (BCP) and in the NCB Interpol of Tajikistan. These BCPs were nominated by the Government of Tajikistan in September 2009. The development of projects was also preceded by the technical evaluation procedures for the handling and issuance of travel documents and identity documents, confirming identity in Tajikistan, implemented by the OSCE, ICAO, and IOM in June-July of 2010.” 

According the Mr. Hornek, the results of researches and preliminary needs assessment of the Republic of Tajikistan on strengthening integrated passport control had become the basis for drafting the project proposals “OSCE-Interpol: Support to Interpol in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan,” and “Enhancing Identity Management and Travel Documents Security in Tajikistan,” which were sent to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan in December of 2010. Mr. Hornek has outlined that the donors are available for the first project: the Government of Norway has agreed to allocate a special grant for its implementation, but due to absence of an official response from the Tajik side, the OSCE and Tajikistan have not started the process of project implementation. 

The same situation is with the second project. The technical assessment was carried out by the OSCE, ICAO and IOM specialists in June-July of 2010, its conclusions and suggestions on improvement of issuing travel documents were sent to Tajikistan in December 2010. However, the Tajik side did not take any efficient measures to coordinate the project documents and to conduct internal procedures for their implementation. 

During a lively discussion, participants of the roundtable have agreed on the recommendations, aimed to expedite the solution of issues related to the implementation of abovementioned projects, which will be sent to the Government of Tajikistan. 

Thus, let us try to sort out the official information and to explain the information of the press-release to our readers in more easy way, since the information, given in a current form is clear to only narrow circle of specialists. 

Tajikistan is a participating State of the OSCE, as well as of IOM and ICAO. Membership in these organizations imposes certain commitments on Tajikistan.