Central Asia

PONARS Eurasia 14 Sep 2020
(Majlis Podcast) For weeks, people in Belarus have been protesting against the results of that country’s August 9 presidential election that saw longtime incumbent leader Alyanksandr Lukashenka claim an overwhelming victory that few of his countrymen believed was true. [...] This week’s guests are, speaking from Washington, Erica Marat, associate professor at the National Defense University and...
PONARS Eurasia 29 Jul 2020
(The Diplomat) Over the last decade, China cemented its position as a consequential actor in Central Asia. Motivated to increase regional connectivity, diversify sources of energy imports, and safeguard its western territories, China invested heavily in trade and infrastructure projects in Central Asia. The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), launched in 2013, became the cornerstone of China’s...
Marlene Laruelle 15 Jul 2020
(NYU Jordan Center) U.S. observers and policymakers have often seen Russian-origin media as responsible for influencing the opinions and worldviews of Russia’s post-Soviet neighbors. However, our analysis of surveys in Central Asia found little evidence for this influence. Russian-origin media maintain a strong presence throughout much of the former USSR: produced for domestic audiences,...
PONARS Eurasia 08 Jun 2020
(RFE/RL) When Ukraine’s Privatbank filed a lawsuit in the United States against its former owner Ihor Kolomoyskiy one year ago, it claimed the tycoon had used a slew of anonymous shell companies registered in the U.S. state of Delaware to carry out what it called a “brazen” heist. [...] Alexander Cooley, director of Columbia University's Harriman Institute and the author of a book on...
Marlene Laruelle 01 May 2020
(OpenDemocracy) The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a new front in great power competition — global health posturing. Whether it is assigning blame, providing medical aid, or modelling the most effective response, great powers are waging an information war against each other. China is aggressively defending its crisis management methods in the face of rising criticism from the international...
Erica Marat 13 Apr 2020
(RFE/RL) Around the world, governments are implementing new rules to counter the spread of the coronavirus. In some cases, there are questions as to whether some of these measures are helping governments gain further control over their populations. In Central Asia, for example, restrictions on movement in towns and cities has left journalists in a situation where special permission is...
Alexander Cooley 31 Mar 2020
(Reconnecting Asia | TRACE) A trilogy of corruption and bribery cases centered around Uzbekistan's telecommunications market have reverberated through international courts, highlighting just how severe the global risks can be of deciding to pay off politically connected elites in even the most closed and far-off countries. Read More © Reconnecting Asia Complimentary excerpt (PDF...
PONARS Eurasia 13 Feb 2020
(Nikkei Asia Review) ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo took advantage of his visit to Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan last week to lambast China over its treatment of its Muslim minorities and reliability as a business partner, but was met with a lukewarm response from the two Central Asian states. Pompeo, who was making the first visit to the region by America's top-...