German Chancellor Angela Merkel has met with President Nursultan Nasarbeyev of Kazakhstan to discuss trade and investment. The visit draws her five-day tour of Asia to a close.
EU CENTRAL ASIA STRATEGY
President Hamid Karzai on Tuesday reaffirmed his commitment for Afghan police and soldiers to take charge of security nationwide by 2014 and urged his international backers to distribute more of their development aid through the government.
Turkey’s increasingly messy entanglement with Israel is forcing Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu to change tack on his overall foreign policy vision vis-à-vis the Middle East. He continues to garner much respect and support on Arab streets and among radical groups or countries in the region with his increasingly angry remarks toward Israel.
Last April 7, the world was too busy to notice Russian fingerprints on the coup that toppled Kyrgyzstani President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Within weeks, ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbeks were at each other’s throats. Moscow, it seems, is good at breaking things, but not at fixing them.
Kyrgyzstan's provisional leader Roza Otunbayeva has been sworn in as president, ushering in what the Central Asian nation's government hopes will be a new era of stability and democratic freedoms.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev unexpectedly criticized a government reform vote in Kyrgyzstan that passed Sunday with 91 percent support.
First results from Sunday's referendum on Kyrgyzstan’s new constitution show voters to be overwhelmingly behind a charter that seeks to give the country’s parliament greater power whilst limiting that of the president.
It had to be one of the weirdest displays the Russian president had ever seen. Laid out on a table were a mound of walnuts, a chess set, an old tire and an anatomically correct dummy — all stuffed with little baggies of imitation heroin. Titled "The Deadly Harvest," the exhibit was meant to show the clever ways smugglers have of getting Afghan heroin into Russia, which has become the world's largest consumer of opiates from Afghanistan since the U.S. began its war there in 2001.
Amid corruption scandals and ongoing instability it is easy to write off Kyrgyzstan as a state destined to fail due to its dishonest political leaders and impoverished economy. However, despite the fact that the provisional government has not filled all its ministerial seats and faces numerous domestic challenges, there is a strong sense of normality in Kyrgyzstan’s daily life. As local NGO groups like to describe it: “despite troubled government, life continues in Bishkek.” Indeed, in the past two months Kyrgyzstan has changed from being a country where dynastic succession of state power was most likely to a place with free media and active civic engagement.
The violence unleashed in Kyrgyzstan is being spun as ethnic rioting. The reality is a good deal more complex, and the blame can be laid directly at Russia's door. Russia's coup against the Bakiyev government which took power in the Tulip Revolution leveraged Uzbek separatists in the Osh Province to suppress Kyrgiz nationalist supporters of Bakiyev.