When it comes to the brewing arms race in the Caspian Sea region, no one can accuse Turkmen leader Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov of navel-gazing. Ashgabat is now able to back its claims to some energy-rich patches of the sea with considerable firepower.
With the planned US and NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014 looming ever closer, Russia is pressing to solidify strategic relationships with Central Asian states, especially with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
Ancient Persia was a heavily trafficked corridor on the Silk Road, the transcontinental trade route between China and the West that flourished centuries ago. But in Washington’s imagining of a 21st century version of the Silk Road, Iran seems set to be bypassed.
The killing of Ahmed Wali Karzai, the half-brother of Afghan President Ahmed Karzai, was a shocking development -- even for Afghanistan, a country steeped in tragedy. But experts are unsure whether it will have a lasting impact on political developments.
If Rahimjan Makhatov had a radical bent, he kept it well hidden.
Before Kazakh officials announced that the 25-year-old had carried out the country's first suicide attack last week, he was an unremarkable figure. Now, in light of that bombing and another apparent attack today in the capital, he and those who influenced him are under intense scrutiny.
Michael Emerson is a Senior Research Fellow at the Brussels-based Centre for European Policy Studies, which is an independent think-tank focused on probing European Union issues through research, debates and publications.
The topic of civilian casualties in military operations in Afghanistan is attracting lots of international attention these days. But a far more serious problem from the Afghan perspective is the matter of avoidable deaths connected to a lack of human security.
Tajikistan’s security services are in the spotlight following two recent explosions and an audacious jailbreak in the Central Asian nation. The violence may be an indicator of faulty government personnel policies, some experts suggest.
The recent ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan has President Islam Karimov’s administration in Tashkent worried about the possibility of ethnic unrest in Uzbekistan. To make sure ethnic passions remain in check, Uzbek leaders have launched a wide-scale propaganda campaign.