Central Asia

  • Shaffer in Geopolitical Intelligence Services: Uzbekistan’s Reforms: Opening a New Era in Central Asia?


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  • Fairbank in U.S. News & World Report: Central Asia Is a Critical Crossroads


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  • Future Tense: Karimov’s Bitter Legacy in Uzbekistan

    On September 1, Uzbekistan will celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary of independence, but for the first time without its long-time president, Islam Abduganievich Karimov leading the dancing and music-filled celebrations in the capital Tashkent.

    Karimov suffered a stroke on August 27 and it is most likely that the seventy-eight-year-old, who was already in poor health, has died or become so incapacitated that he will never lead Uzbekistan again. [Update: Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on September 2 said Karimov had died. There was no official confirmation of the news from Uzbekistan.] For the generations that have grown up since 1989, Karimov is the only leader they have ever known. To them the future is uncertain and insecure.

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  • Herbst on Kerry's Visit to Central Asia

    Voice of America Russian Service quotes Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center Director John E. Herbst on Secretary of State John Kerry's visit to Central Asia:

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  • Euromaidan’s Shockwaves: An Exile in Ukraine Recalls Fleeing his Native Kyrgyzstan

    On a recent warm summer night, Ilya Lukash sat in a bar near Kyiv's trendy Kontraktova Square, drinking a beer and chatting with his friends in Ukrainian, Russian, and English. In a red T-shirt emblazoned with patriotic Ukrainian slogans, he could easily have been any one of the countless young, educated, pro-democracy Ukrainians who in February 2014 came out to support the Euromaidan movement that toppled President Viktor Yanukovych.

    But Lukash, 28, wasn't in Kyiv for the Maidan, he's not from Ukraine, and eighteen months ago, he didn't even speak Ukrainian. Rather, Lukash is a citizen of Kyrgyzstan—and a pro-Western blogger who supported the Euromaidan from afar, and paid a high price for it. In March 2014, as Russia's "little green men" were quietly seizing the Crimean peninsula, he fled Kyrgyzstan after Kyrgyz nationalists pilloried him as a "gay activist" during an anti-Western protest.

    Caught between fighting for his beliefs and Russia's deteriorating ties with the West, Lukash chose to support Ukraine—the land of his ancestors—as it struggles for a European, democratic future. Meanwhile, his native Kyrgyzstan has been moving closer to Moscow, and the Ukraine crisis seemed to confirm the government's growing alignment with the Kremlin. Lukash didn't know it, but he was on a collision course with his country's changing politics.

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  • Tanchum: Energy is the Key to Modi’s Central Asia Reset

    Eurasian Energy Futures Initiative Nonresident Senior Fellow Micha'el Tanchum writes for the South Asian Monitor on why energy is an essential part of India's Central Asian reset:

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  • Herbst on Russia Manipulating ISIS Threat in Central Asia

    Foreign Policy quotes Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center Director John Herbst on Russian efforts to protect Central Asian countries from the threat of ISIS:

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  • Legacy of Ukraine: The Need to Engage Central Asia in the Wake of Russian Aggression

    Despite the ongoing battles raging in Ukraine, more focus should be placed on the less obvious and often ignored opportunities for the West in Central Asia.

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  • Transit through Georgia – Potential for US Foreign Policy Success

    Georgia plays a growing, though little-known, role in the global economy. Strategically linked with Azerbaijan, it serves as a key element in the transportation network that connects landlocked, but resource-rich areas of Central Asia to world markets via its Black Sea ports and Turkey. Over one million barrels of oil and oil products cross Georgian territory daily using pipelines, the railways, and ports. For a decade, Georgian ports have also served as entry points for commercial and military cargo destined for Central Asia and Afghanistan. Azerbaijan and Georgia are expected to play a greater role in container transit between Asia and Europe in the years to come. A close ally of the US and NATO that has made significant troop contributions to Afghanistan, Georgia needs greater support for its security from the US as well as from multiple actors interested in Georgia’s growing transit potential.   

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  • Security in Central Asia

    Eurasia Foundation and the Atlantic Council were please to host a discussion on security in Central Asia.While most of the world faces Ukraine, security in Central Asia continues to be at the forefront of issues facing Eurasia. The 2014 US withdrawal from Afghanistan, ongoing negotiations of the Northern Distribution Network, and Russia’s continued push for economic and military influence in the region are among the primary issues in the region. Dr. Erica Marat and Ms. Courtney Ranson discussed US policy toward Central Asia, Russia’s massive effort to exclude the United States through political and media campaigns, and China’s efforts to keep Central Asia out of the orbit of Western influence.
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