Turkey’s multi-billion-dollar gold sales to neighboring Iran could put the country on a collision course with its close ally, the United States, when high-ranking diplomats from the two countries hold talks in Washington.
Perceptions of corruption penetrate just about every aspect of life in Kyrgyzstan, including the spiritual side. For years, the Hajj – the pilgrimage to Mecca required of every able Muslim – has been beset by allegations of graft involving those responsible for distributing the limited number of places.
In most countries, it’s unusual for the looming death of a television character to become a source of official anxiety. In Turkey, however, a hit television series chronicling the 16th century reign of Ottoman Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent has riled officials, who are looking to that era to help shape their own conservative message.
Anyone who’s traveled in the vast open spaces of Central Asia has heard it, or seen it plastered on roadside monuments punctuating long stretches of highway: Ak Jol in Kazakh and Kyrgyz and Oq Yol in Uzbek. “White Road.” It means something like “safe journey” or “have a good trip.”
In Armenia, abortion is widely available, but women continue to undergo riskier means of terminating unwanted pregnancies. A major problem is that a well-established alternative method, which is recommended by the international medical community, is underutilized.
Newly released documents appear to make a connection between executives from a Swedish company accused of bribing its way into Uzbekistan’s telecoms market and Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of the country’s strongman, Islam Karimov.
As if there aren’t enough major international athletic competitions already on the calendar, the inaugural European Olympic Games are set to take place in 2015, with Azerbaijan’s capital Baku playing the host.