Central Asia

Global Europe 27-06-2022

Putin to make first foreign trips since launching Ukraine war

Vladimir Putin will visit two small former Soviet states in central Asia this week, Russian state television reported on Sunday (26 June), in what would be the Russian leader's first known trip abroad since ordering the invasion of Ukraine.

Kazakhstan key ‘Middle Corridor’ linking China to EU

Kazakhstan has a vital role to play in the Middle Corridor, or Trans-Caspian International Transport Route EU officials said at a public event in Brussels on Wednesday (15 June).

Independent analyst: Kazakh authorities are aware of the scale of public discontent

The Kazakh authorities at first tried to stigmatise as terrorists and outcasts those who had taken to the streets in January, but they are very aware of the scale of public discontent and are trying to respond to them, political analyst Anastassiya Reshetnyak said in an interview.

Analyst: Too many ‘Black Swans’ in the vicinity of Kazakhstan

Too many ‘Black Swans’ have appeared globally, many in the vicinity of Kazakhstan. Still, the country will continue its muti-vector policy to ensure stability in contact with the world’s major players, Askar Nursha, an independent political analyst, told EURACTIV in an interview.

Kazakhstan voters open way for political reform

Over 76% of Kazakh voters approved on Sunday (5 June) the constitutional changes aimed at political reform put to a referendum by President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, with 68.44% or 8 million citizens turning out to vote, according to exit polls.

Kazakhstan’s constitutional referendum explained

On Friday (3 June), Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev gave the shortest speech of his career – only three minutes, expressing the ambition “to make New Kazakhstan a reality” in which social justice would be the principal value.

Kazakhstan’s constitutional referendum

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On 5 June a package of constitutional amendments is expected to be approved by referendum in Kazakhstan. The proposed constitutional changes, following five months after the greatest unrest in the country’s modern history, accelerate the efforts by the country’s president...

With referendum, Kazakh President pushes for reforms

While the EU and US are preoccupied with the Ukraine war, they should pay attention to events in Central Asia as well, where on Sunday (5 June) a package of constitutional amendments will be approved by referendum in Kazakhstan, write Svante E. Cornell and Albert Barro.

Tajikistan detains 114 over clashes in troubled region

Police in Tajikistan said Thursday (19 May) over 100 people were arrested in a "counter-terror operation" after fatal clashes roiled an eastern region that the authoritarian regime has long struggled to control.

Nine dead, 24 wounded in clashes in restive Tajikistan region

Clashes between Tajik security forces and "terrorists" killed nine people and wounded two dozen in a restive region bordering Afghanistan and China, the interior ministry said on Wednesday (18 May).

Kazakhstan president calls for constitutional referendum, warns against ‘provocateurs’

Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has announced a national referendum on his proposed amendments to the county’s constitution and warned against what he described as “provocateurs who are trying to undermine the unity in the country”.

Meaningful investigation of Kazakhstan’s January unrest is ‘key’, EU says

Meaningful investigations into January's unrest and genuine follow up on announced reforms will be crucial for Kazakhstan, EU representatives, and academics agreed at a recent EURACTIV event, though scholars remain sceptical about the authorities' resolve.

Kazakh official: We will not risk being placed in the same basket as Russia

In a wide-ranging interview, Timur Suleimenov, the First Deputy Chief of Staff to the President of Kazakhstan, discussed the war in Ukraine, the impact on his country of the Western sanctions, the drive for modernization following the January unrest in his country and the changing geopolitical balances.

Kazakh President lays out constitutional reforms following January unrest

Constitutional reforms to limit the powers of the president's office have been announced by Kazakhstan's President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who says the country needs to switch from "superpresidential" rule to a presidential republic with a strong parliament.
Europe's East 14-03-2022

‘Nobody can tell me if Kazakhstan can sell yogurt to Russia’

The EU and the US should draw a clear red line between what is sanctioned and goods that can be continued to be traded with Russia, Kairat Torebayev, vice-minister of trade and integration of Kazakhstan, told EURACTIV.

Kazakhstan undergoes changes comparable to ‘Perestroika’

The events of January bring to a close the two-year Kazakh duumvirate with former President Nazarbayev, paving the way to a political system firmly united around President Tokayev, perceived as a reformist, writes Alberto Turkstra.

Kazakhstan takes distance from Russia’s Ukraine war

Kazakhstan, one of Russia's closest allies, has denied a request for its troops to join the offensive in Ukraine and will not recognise the so-called republics of Donetsk and Lugansk.

Myanmar attacks Rohingya genocide case at UN’s top court

Myanmar hit out Monday (21 February) at a genocide case brought against it by the Gambia for alleged persecution of Rohingya Muslims, urging the UN's highest court to drop the claim on legal grounds.

UNICEF to pay stipend to Afghan teachers

The United Nations children's agency would pay Afghan teachers a monthly stipend for at least two months, the organisation said, with salaries unpaid for months as the country is plunged into economic crisis due to sanctions on the Taliban administration.
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European Parliament resolution following Kazakhstan’s ‘tragic January’ is disappointing

It was deeply disappointing that the European Parliament adopted a resolution on the tragic events in Kazakhstan in the first days of January, which did not reflect the real situation on the ground, writes Erzhan Kazykhan.

Kazakh ombudsman looks into reported police violence against protesters

Kazakhstan’s Commissioner for Human Rights Elvira Azimova told EURACTIV on Wednesday (2 February) that her office takes seriously the reports that some of the people arrested following the protest in early January had been tortured and that testimonies had been extracted under duress.

Guards clash again on Kyrgyz-Tajik border, ceasefire falters

Kyrgyz and Tajik border guards exchanged fire on Thursday (27 January) amid a standoff over a blocked road, in the latest clash between the former Soviet neighbours following a similar violent incident last year that killed dozens.

Mysterious power blackout hits Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan

The central Asian nations of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan suffered electrical power outages in major cities on Tuesday (25 January), according to authorities and residents, after a major power line in Kazakhstan was disconnected.

Fallout from Kazakh unrest must not undermine decades of progress

It is crucial that after the unrest, president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev now prioritize the safeguarding of the country’s reputation as a stable country, responsible international partner, and attractive investment destination, writes Matthew Bryza.


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