EMBASSY OF UZBEKISTAN TO THE UNITED STATES
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NEWS AND EVENTS
September 3, 2006
ADDRESS by PRESIDENT ISLAM KARIMOV at THE FESTIVE CEREMONY, DEDICATED to THE 15th ANNIVERSARY of INDEPENDENCE OF THE REPUBLIC OF UZBEKISTAN
Assalamu-Alaykum, dear fellow countrymen!

Dear compatriots!

Above all, I am happy to congratulate from the depth of my heart you my dears and in your person our entire nation on the greatest and the dearest date for all of us ? the Independence Day of our Homeland and the 15th anniversary of our sovereignty.

Today as we celebrate the Independence Day, which has opened up a page of freedom and liberty in the lives of our people, with a profound joy and confidence it is natural for us to assess our dreams and aspirations, achieved during the historically short path of 15-year?s development, and the things we have accomplished, as well as pose such questions as who we were and whom we have become and what noble goals do we want to reach.

The rise of our spiritual life ensued from our independence is leading to:

- undoubtedly, our self-realization and recovery of our trampled dignity, values, customs and traditions, our holy Islam, sacred names of great ancestors, saints and thinkers;

- restoration of our national consciousness, national pride and dignity, enabling to bring up our young generation based on these values, altering the spiritual and ideological world of our today?s society and drawing the attention of others to a genuine Uzbek character, world view and assets, adding the strength to our strength, and the energy to our energy.

In economic life:

- to shake off the former centrally-planed system of distribution, one-sidedly developed economy;

- to transit to a totally new, free market economy, carry out radical reforms aimed at structural changes, modernization, privatization and liberalization, enhancing the role of private ownership;

- to achieve the self-sufficiency in energy and fuel, providing the population with grain, meat and dairy products;

- to make small business, farming and entrepreneurship our priority, provide them with the state and social protection, ensure all rights and freedoms, as well as open up broad opportunities for their versatile development. And the life itself proves the very correctness of these efforts.

All these well thought-out and long-term reforms and processes of renovation that we have been realizing became the basis for sustainable and fast development of our economy in the last five to six years.

The inducement of the sense of ownership among our countrymen, - meaning that this land, this country, this home, this Homeland is mine, and living with the sense that the more I contribute to the country?s improvement, the more I, my family, children and generation will benefit significantly, fundamentally changes our people?s view of life and work and contributes to the prosperity of our Homeland.

Nowadays the most important priority of our society is not the state interest, but, first of all, the view of a man, his life, rights and freedoms as a highest value and wealth, and to protect this wealth. In fulfilling these noble tasks, practical results of reforms intended to achieve these ends in our Constitution, all of our state?s and society?s power and capabilities, and in the court system are more evinced and recognized on the international arena.

Especially, thinking of our country?s short and long-term future, aiming the humane and noble ends, strengthening the respect and benevolence, generosity and kindness, mutual respect between nations and religions in our people?s life, mahallas, villages and cities

We witness positive impact of these measures and projects upon the consciousness and beliefs of our people, our elderly and youth.

Every family and citizen living in our country, national programs aimed at the prosperity of our country and society, as well as introducing them into the life, along with the state programs, including the Cadres training, healthcare and development of secondary education, irrespective of the whether they are implemented at the centers or distant areas, are showing today their real meanings and practical results. And I think that no one can deny how they are important for our future. Shortly speaking, throughout last year- I am saying this in front of you, as reporting in your persons to our nation - our country has accomplished the tasks worth centuries that life itself proves the rightness of our path named the Uzbek model we chose fifteen years ago. Today we have all grounds to speak about one truth without hesitation ? we have not turned back and never will from the path chosen upon the will of our nation regardless of the fact that we had to overcome the real challenges and problems, hardships and obstacles, experienced the stormy and difficult days. Our goal is open and obvious ? to establish a democratic and civic society; to enhance the living conditions of our people to the level second to none; to have a peaceful life in the world community and in cooperation with far and bordering countries. For centuries our country has been waiting and wishing to attain such noble aims and no one can stop us from our comprehensively proved way.

Forces and movements that wish to threaten us and lead us astray from pure goals which our people had waited with a hope and lived with inspiration, the way of independence which proved itself in all kinds. Whether they are enemies hating our Homeland, or destructive and aggressive forces, or attempts to pose pressure and violence, interference in our domestic affairs, to teach us how to live or people trying to bring to our threshold problems of extremism and international terrorism and whatever mask they wear, we have one single answer for all of them: end your unacceptable intentions, your subversive and evil attempts ? the Uzbek people had never obeyed anyone and will never depend on others.

Our millennia-old history and great culture as well as outstanding scientists and thinkers renowned all over the world and world-famous great rulers and military leaders which had been conquered by no one are the prove for this.

The ground for it is our creative people with their rich experience, proud, tolerant, very patient and if necessary - ready to resist to any aggressor or conqueror, who have preserved its vigilance and delicacy and continue its peaceful life. Its criteria ? our Military Forces that ensure our peace and security, bravely guard our borders, serve with courage and valor, conform modern standards and express the readiness to combat any challenges.

Its support ? our strong young generation, basis of our people, which is ready to contribute to and glorify the legacy of our forefathers and also compete with any one.

Dear friends!

I think you will join me that the souls of our forefathers, who have dreamed for centuries about freedom and sovereignty of our nation and much sacrificed their lives in this way are pleased in this sacred day.

Today I would like to congratulate every one of you on the Independence Day and, first of all, bow before the maker and creator of every of our achievements - our brave, selfless and noble people.

I address my sincere wishes to our respected fathers and mothers, the pearl of our households ? our kind and nice women, as well as our growing youth.

I wish all of you health, luck and happiness, prosperity, and bounties to your households.

Let God Himself safe our blessed Homeland from evil eyes!

Let our nation be safe, our skies ? clear, and our independence ? perpetual!

***

And, now allow us on behalf of you, my dears, all of those gathered at this glorious venue, to welcome from the depth of our hearts along with impassioned applause and show respect to our artists, who stand ready and eager to demonstrate their art and skills.


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