The authorities in South Ossetia want to change the name of their self-declared republic in response to a historical dispute with a rival Caucasus nation. A rebranding could also, some in South Ossetia hope, hasten its incorporation into the Russia Federation.
The victory of Shavkat Mirziyoyev in Uzbekistan’s special presidential election December 4 was never in doubt, but the Soviet-style scale of his winning margin indicates that hopes of pending political reform may have been premature.
Russia has forged an informal network of authoritarian-minded states in Eurasia dedicated to silencing dissenters living in exile. A leading expert on Eurasian affairs has dubbed this coalition as the “Repressintern.”
Fatima Romanova wears an understated black shirt and brown pants, but a colorful glittery t-shirt peeks out underneath; her hair is stylishly short and combed on the right. She waits tables at a café in Tbilisi's old district, decorated with flowers and paintings on the wall. One of the paintings is of a girl in a flowery dress and red shoes.
Brexit, a Trump presidency and populist and pro-Russian leaders coming to power in Europe—the world has taken an increasingly populist tilt and experts are struggling to make sense of the new political trends.
Of the four candidates running in Uzbekistan’s special presidential election on December 4, only one really counts — Acting President Shavkat Mirziyoyev. All the same, the campaign has been unusual in that it has given some prominence to the also-rans and, in the process, has paid lip service to competitive democratic practices.
The novel Ali and Nino has long been beloved both for its affecting cross-cultural love story and for its rich, complex portrait of the Caucasus. But in a new film adaptation of the book – executive produced by the daughter of Azerbaijan's president – much of that complexity is ironed out into a narrative closely tracking the Azerbaijani government's preferred image of itself.