25 april 2014

Central Asia news: Interview

“Everybody says that only the police were shooting”

“Everybody says that only the police were shooting”

03.12.2012 21:17 msk Interview Kazakhstan

A group of guests from Europe visited Kazakhstan from 26 October to 4 November. Journalist and human rights defender from Helsinki Oksana Chelysheva, Finnish photographer Kukka Ranta and Latvian photographer Maris Morkans went to the Central Asian republic to find about the situation there ioday, almost a year after the tragic events in Zhanaozen. Now, having talked to local residents and gathered a lot of documentary material, they are determined to lobby in Europe for political prisoners in Kazakhstan. A visible result of their journey is a photography exhibition “Kazakhstan with European eyes”, which is currently being prepared.

US Ambassador in Uzbekistan George Krol:

US Ambassador in Uzbekistan George Krol: "We recognize democracy may develop and look differently in Uzbekistan."

25.09.2012 10:51 msk Interview Uzbekistan

In recent months and years the political and economic cooperation between the US and Uzbekistan has been developing actively. This arouses lively interest and even some worry in other countries’ governments, and is a subject of discussion in the press and a reason for rumours amongst experts. Fergana interviewed US Ambassador to Uzbekistan George Krol. An experienced diplomat, Mr Krol avoided answering almost every question, moving away from the topic or swapping answers for quotations from press releases from the State Department. However, the ambassador of any country is not going to be the person to say exactly what he is thinking. He gives voice to the official position of the country whhich he represents. This position differs widely from the one that people who connect America to hopes of a swift democratic change in Uzbekistan want to hear.

"In Kyrgyzstan, corruption is not a problem for the state, it IS the state"

30.12.2011 22:01 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan



The Kyrgyzstani state should be understood primarily as a market for investing in public offices, claims a Swedish political scientist in a newly published doctoral thesis. Dr. Johan Engvall says ordinary political theory does not even provide us with the tools to understand the Central Asian republic, because in it, corruption is not an external problem but the very method of governance. The full-fledged cooperation between police and organised crime under president Bakiev was a low point, he says, but he isn't too impressed by the the post-Bakiev politicians either. At the same time, this state-for-sale can be changed, he believes, pointing at the Georgian example.

Sex slavery: personal story in detail

Sex slavery: personal story in detail

01.12.2011 09:16 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

It’s never been a secret that women from Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan regularly work abroad as prostitutes. Yet, few people know of details of such “labor migration”. Fergana has taken an interview of a person, citizen of Bishkek, who has worked as a prostitute in Dubai (OAE).

Kadyrzhan Batyrov: Kyrgyz authorities failed to train people to work and pay bills

Kadyrzhan Batyrov: Kyrgyz authorities failed to train people to work and pay bills

02.02.2011 15:10 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Kadyrzhan Batyrov, one of the leaders of Uzbek community in Kyrgyzstan, the founder and president of private university in Jalal-Abad, former parliamentary deputy and state advisor of second rank, became the major person involved in June tragedy in southern Kyrgyzstan. Both national and independent commissions as well as certain politicians refer to Batyrov as one of the main causers of interethnic clashes and victims. After being silent and in exile, Kadyrzhan Batyrov agreed to give exclusive interview to Ferghana where he shares about his communication with interim government members, "Uzbek separatism" and "Kyrgyz nationalism".

Alexander Knyazev: Kyrgyzstan is the first candidate to repeat the Kosovo scenario

Alexander Knyazev: Kyrgyzstan is the first candidate to repeat the Kosovo scenario

10.01.2011 15:07 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Professor Alexander Knyazev, the consultant of the Institute of political solutions (Almaty) became one of the first experts, raising the expected destabilization in Kyrgyzstan and its reasons. "The explosions and other terrorist activities will become regular part of life in Kyrgyzstan", he told Ferghana at the beginning of December, 2010. The news on deteriorating security situation in Kyrgyzstan arose soon. In concern with recent events in Bishkek and Kyrgyzstan in general Ferghana asked Alexander Knyazev few questions over the telephone.

Alexander Knyazev: Terrorism will become the part of everyday life in Kyrgyzstan

10.12.2010 11:57 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Alexander Knyazev, the coordinator of regional programs, senior fellow in the Institute of Oriental Studies under Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow), the consultant of the Institute of political decisions (Almaty), answered the questions of Ferghana Chief Editor Daniil Kislov. The conversation covered the situation in today’s Kyrgyzstan: in the opinion of expert, the government demonstrates unwillingness and inability to publicly condemn aggressive nationalism and this may lead to destruction of statehood and so-called "intifada": dozens of thousands Uzbeks left the republic, big share of them are demoralized while the youth, seeking the justice, may join IMU or Hizb ut-Tahrir".

Vugar Khalilov: Investigators told me,

Vugar Khalilov: Investigators told me, "how can you be not guilty if the journalists keep saying that you are Bakievist?!

22.11.2010 09:54 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Vugar Khalilov, the Director-General of Flexi Communications PR agency, has demanded from the president of the RFE/RL Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty) and from the Prosecutor General of Kyrgyzstan to investigate who and why has libeled him in the program of the RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service (Radio "Azattyk") what resulted in his imprisonment almost for 5 months in the jail of the Kyrgyzstan's National Security Ministry (GSNB). At the end of the day the court has completely acquitted the British citizen, however activity of the PR agency V.Khalilov established in Kyrgyzstan has been still paralyzed. Vugar Khalilov has told to Fergana.Ru how the investigation was carried on, what he was accused of, and also about specifics of the information war in Kyrgyzstan which, in its opinion, has in certain extent led to the “April events”.

Aziza Abdirasulova: They call pogroms as meetings, they call arson as meeting…

Aziza Abdirasulova: They call pogroms as meetings, they call arson as meeting…

14.11.2010 17:05 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Nearly all serious political issues in Kyrgyzstan are raised during the demonstrations, the number of which under new government increased by few times compared to the Bakiev’s rule. People rush into streets, not even clearly understanding what the peaceful demonstration is all about, how to behave, and how to form the requirements. Aziza Abdirasulova, the prominent Kyrgyz human rights activist and head of Kylym Shamy NGO, shared with Ferghana.Ru about major mistakes of the protesters, police performance during the protests, peculiarities of today’s meetings, special women’s task forces, new law and sponsored attendance of the meetings.

Tolekan Ismailova: “The investigation of southern events is strategic issue”

Tolekan Ismailova: “The investigation of southern events is strategic issue”

18.09.2010 13:05 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

The establishment of the international commission for investigation of events in Kyrgyzstan is the task that was discussed by the international human rights organizations and diplomats from over 100 countries in Barcelona in September. The report on situation in Kyrgyzstan was delivered by Tolekan Ismailova, the head of Citizens against Corruption human rights organization, which had to leave the republic in July due to security reasons. In the interview with Ferghana.Ru Tolekan Ismailova shared about the future of the president, opinion about Kyrgyz human rights advocates and those who came to power both in April, 2010 and March, 2005.

Danish journalist Michael Andersen: I am ashamed that European media and politicians do not understand the tragedy in Kyrgyzstan

14.06.2010 16:55 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

European media pay little attention to the tragedy in South Kyrgyzstan. They view it as an interethnic clash between nations which they know very little about. Current media interest is motivated by either national interests – European interests do not include small and poor Kyrgyzstan – or having by vivid pictures which are not widely available since Southern Kyrgyzstan cannot be easily reached by foreign correspondents. This means that in Western media, the pain and blood of Osh cannot compete with this week’s main story – the football World Cup. Danish journalist Michael Andersen informed Ferghana.Ru about the reaction of European media and politicians.

Islam Karimov & Co are the ones radicalising Central Asia

Islam Karimov & Co are the ones radicalising Central Asia

18.01.2010 22:58 msk Interview Central Asia

Over the past decade and a half, the regimes in Central Asia have with the help of labels such as ‘extremist’ and ‘terrorist’ practically exterminated all opposition. “But by imprisoning and torturing thousands, the dictators in Central Asia are creating a time bomb of discontent”, says the Danish journalist Michael Andersen, “and unfortunately, the West is looking the other way”. Andersen who has covered Central Asia for many years, has just finished his latest film ‘The Myth of Religious Extremism in Central Asia’. The film will be shown on the channel Aljazeera English from this Wednesday, and can also be seen on the channel’s website. Fergana.ru interviews Michael Andersen about his latest project. “The heroes of the film are the incredibly courageous human rights defenders and journalists who stand up to the regimes, often risking their own lives”, says the Danish journalist, “I think we all know who the villains are”.

"Let them burn it…"Askar Akaev is outraged with disorder in Kyrgyzstan

20.11.2009 11:04 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

The representatives of Kyrgyz special services, Public Prosecutor’s office and law enforcement agencies showed up in the house of Askar Akaev, the former President of Kyrgyzstan, in Bishkek. They ordered to take all personal belongings and free the house within one day. Two months ago the library of the First Kyrgyz President was also expropriated by the government. In the morning of November 16 Askar Akaevich called our office, named our "Internet newspaper" the most influential edition in the region and suggested publishing his opinion on this issue. It has to be mentioned that when Askar Akaevich was complaining about family rule we never interrupted him: Are you the one who is complaining? Even the person, who is associated with the launch of family rule system, prospering corruption and elimination of independent courts in Kyrgyzstan, has the right to complain when his property is expropriated. Our "Internet newspaper" left the right to add some strokes that, in our opinion, better reflect the situation.

Movement Against Karimov in Europe

Movement Against Karimov in Europe

05.11.2009 11:01 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Movement Against Karimov was founded in Sweden. Its founder Mark Ruppert has its own score to even with the Uzbek authorities. He is determined to help the people of Uzbekistan to "rid itself of Karimov and his criminal clique that seized the country." Ruppert intends to go about it through legitimate channels, i.e. courts. Movement Against Karimov lawyers prepare a lawsuit to the Hague Tribunal in the hope that the latter will condemn Karimov's criminal actions and unseat him.

"Uzbek militants are becoming very active in Waziristan" - Senator Ibrahim Khan

16.09.2009 15:01 msk Interview Pakistan

There are more than 5,000 Uzbek militants from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan hiding in North and South Waziristan, the Pakistani newspaper Daily Times reported. It quoted the FATA Additional Chief Secretary Habibullah Khan who asserted that these militants were known to travel through Balochistan. He also said there was evidence that the USA, Israel and India were involved in nurturing the insurgency in FATA. At the same time Senator Prof. Muhammad Ibrahim Khan revealed that Uzbek militants could also enter Waziristan through the international Islamabad airport. He claimed that FATA administration has been well aware of this. The information agency Ferghana.ru has interviewed Senator Ibrahim Khan on these and other issues.

Dosym Satpayev: Uzbekistan is one of the major destabilization factors in the region

Dosym Satpayev: Uzbekistan is one of the major destabilization factors in the region

23.07.2009 16:17 msk Interview Uzbekistan

After the events in Khanabad Uzbekistan started the erection of concrete walls, digging the ditches and trenches at the border with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan without any preliminary agreements. The emerged tensions became the subject of analysis by international experts that again focused the attention on peculiarities of Uzbek foreign policy in the region. Ferghana.Ru correspondent met Dosym Satpayev, the prominent political scientist and the director of Risk Evaluation Group. In the opinion of expert, the policy of Uzbekistan is the major factor that hinders the integration and cooperation in the region.

NATO airbase in Kyrgyzstan: Leaving or staying

NATO airbase in Kyrgyzstan: Leaving or staying

08.06.2009 12:26 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Referring to deterioration of the situation in his country, President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai asked his Kyrgyz counterpart Kurmanbek Bakiyev to permit NATO to retain its airbase at Manas. The request appeared several months after the decision to have the counter-terrorism coalition shut down its airbase voted by the parliament of Kyrgyzstan and endorsed by its president. For comments, Ferghana.Ru approached prominent political scientists, experts, and specialists in Central Asia.

Arkady Dubnov: The Afghanis tolerate armed occupiers but it is getting increasingly more difficult to do so

Arkady Dubnov: The Afghanis tolerate armed occupiers but it is getting increasingly more difficult to do so

02.06.2009 11:26 msk Interview Afghanistan

US mission to NATO invited six European journalists from Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, Iceland, Georgia, and Russia to Afghanistan. International observer Arkady Dubnov (Vremya Novostei) represented Russia. On his return to Moscow, Dubnov told Ferghana.Ru what he had seen on the route from Kabul to Kandahar to Bamian and back to Kabul. The expert said that in his opinion, the ultimate moment when failure of the Americans' efforts would become final was close: resistance was too strong, Western values were too alien, and so were the Americans themselves. Even the loyal Afghanis wanted to see the last of the Western occupiers, Dubnov said.

Miroslav Niyazov: We have acute shortage of political forces, able to lead the country out of crisis

15.05.2009 14:39 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

On May 15 Reporter-Bishkek newspaper published the interview with former Kyrgyz Republic Security Council Secretary, Miroslav Niyazov, where he says about possible loss of statehood by Kyrgyzstan, complex situation in the country and disability and illegitimacy of the government. Niyazov is affirmed that the majority of people will not vote in the presidential elections and that after the elections people will flood the streets since serious protest potential has been accumulated in the country.

Pavel Bardin: It is possible to bring skinheads round

Pavel Bardin: It is possible to bring skinheads round

30.04.2009 12:34 msk Interview Russia

Russia 88, a story of skinheads, is finally released. Officially certified, the film by Pavel Bardin is shunned by movie theaters. When it was to be run within the framework of Spirit of Fire film festival in Khanty-Mansiisk, organizers of the film festival got a call from the Kremlin. They were told in no uncertain terms that Russia 88 was to be left without the grand prix. The jury opted for a compromise then and gave Bardin's film a special award. Here is an interview with Pavel Bardin, author of the film that is bordering on being a taboo.

Kazakhstan: Cyber terrorists attack the independent press

Kazakhstan: Cyber terrorists attack the independent press

13.04.2009 12:17 msk Interview Kazakhstan

Since the first days of April several web-based news agencies of Kazakhstan have been attacked by hackers. Today, at least two internet-editions (Respublika.kz and ZonaKZ.net) are constantly facing network attacks. These resources either totally disappear from web-browsers or become accessible for a while and then "fade away" again under the pressure of robots and viruses. We interviewed the participants of this battle – Yury Mizinov, chief editor of Zona, and Alexey Shatlovsky, Ferghana.Ru expert and internet technologies specialist – on the details of virtual fights with cyber criminals.

Boris Akunin: If they do not want me to write a book, dedicated to Uzbekistan in the beginning of the century, I am not going to

Boris Akunin: If they do not want me to write a book, dedicated to Uzbekistan in the beginning of the century, I am not going to

08.04.2009 16:10 msk Interview Uzbekistan

On April 8, Russian mass media reported that prominent Russian author Grigory Chkhartishvili, writing under pseudonym of Boris Akunin, "was refused to enter Uzbekistan". According to Irina Bogat, the director of Zhaharov publishing house, where books of Akunin are published, the author of novel series, devoted to detective Fandorin, began working on new book and was planning to visit the republic to collect information. However, the authorities of Uzbekistan did not like the opinion of the author and he was not allowed entering the country.

Edil Baisalov: The mission of the next President is to clean up the political area, establish new game rules and leave

Edil Baisalov: The mission of the next President is to clean up the political area, establish new game rules and leave

26.03.2009 15:57 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

The spring of 2009 in Kyrgyzstan is expected to be traditionally active. The authorities urgently announced the date of the presidential elections and the nomination of candidates has been launched in the country. In its turn, the opposition forces are launching the mass protest demonstrations. Are there real conditions for the change of power in the country? Is the presidential chair attractive in the condition of crisis? Ferghana.ru interviewed Edil Baisalov, former executive secretary of Social-democratic party of Kyrgyzstan, on these and other topics.

International Union of Labor Immigration Support established in Russia

International Union of Labor Immigration Support established in Russia

26.02.2009 11:54 msk Interview Russia

Foundation conference of the movement International Union of Labor Immigration Support took place in Yekaterinburg (Urals) on February 21. Heydar Jemal, Russian Islamic Committee Chairman and movement leader, explained that Yekaterinburg had been chosen deliberately. First, this city is regarded as the center of Eurasia. Second, the first in Russia strike of labor immigrants in November 2008 took place in Yekaterinburg. Jemal told Ferghana.Ru what the tasks of the new movement were, what it had to offer to labor immigrants and Russian society in general, and who sponsors of the project were.

Arkadiy Dubnov: «The countries, lacking the culture of discussion, are not able to cooperate»

Arkadiy Dubnov: «The countries, lacking the culture of discussion, are not able to cooperate»

10.02.2009 13:06 msk Interview Russia

The extraordinary summits of EurAsEC and CSTO, which took place in Moscow on February 4th, have resulted in, at first glance, important decisions that require substantial financial investment and strong political will from the member countries. The “Ferghana.ru” correspondent interviewed Arkadiy Dubnov, the expert on Central Asia and international observer of “Vremya Novostey” newspaper, on whether it is possible to view the establishment of 10 billion US dollars antirecessionary fund and operational response collective forces as “advancement”.

Ajdar Kurtov: I wouldn't call this base a real pain in the neck for Russia

05.02.2009 13:15 msk Interview Russia

Experts and political scientists comment on the intention of the president of Kyrgyzstan to close the NATO airbase. Here is an interview with Ajdar Kurtov, an expert with the Russian Institute of Strategic Studies.

Photographer Rena Effendi: I'd like to go back to Osh and discover what happened to these people

Photographer Rena Effendi: I'd like to go back to Osh and discover what happened to these people

04.02.2009 20:17 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Rena Effendi's exhibition House of Happiness is on display at Photographer.ru gallery (Modern Arts Center) in Moscow. All photos were made for Marie Claire in Osh, Kyrgyzstan, in September 2007. Their publication fomented a scandal in this Central Asian country. Ferghana.Ru asked Effendi some questions on what had surprised her on her first visit to Osh and why the photos of wedding ceremonies and bordellos had enraged the Kyrgyzes accustomed to having their photos taken against festive backgrounds.

Uzbekistan: Muhammad Salikh is working on an Orange Revolution

Uzbekistan: Muhammad Salikh is working on an Orange Revolution

22.12.2008 11:12 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Political immigrant and Erk party leader Muhammad Salikh proclaimed the beginning of unification of the Uzbek opposition in early December. It is common knowledge meanwhile that all previous attempts at consolidation ended with nothing to show for the effort. Ferghana.Ru asked Sanobar Shermatova, an expert on Central Asia, to phone Salikh for comments on the prospects of the opposition.

Antonietta Gobbis: I can do things in Tashkent that I cannot do in my hometown of Florence

Antonietta Gobbis: I can do things in Tashkent that I cannot do in my hometown of Florence

18.11.2008 16:42 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Antonietta Gobbis is a professor at Uzbek State University of Foreign Languages in Tashkent. She has gained a respect with her students and colleagues since she arrived to Tashkent in January 2008 for her professional activity and friendliness. How the inhabitant of Florence - the city that is often considered as the motherland of the Italian Renaissance – is feeling herself in Tashkent, what she has already liked and what she hasn’t – Antonietta shared in the interview for Ferghana.ru.

Elin Jönsson: “Uzbek Authorities Coined New Truth about Andijan”

Elin Jönsson: “Uzbek Authorities Coined New Truth about Andijan”

19.09.2008 10:07 msk Interview Central Asia

Elin Jönsson, a Swedish journalist, has recently published a book The Art of Concealing Mass Murder about the May 2005 Andijan events in Uzbekistan. Elin spent two years writing the book, which analyzes events prior to the turmoil, discusses details of a tragic day when troops fired at peaceful demonstrators on the square, and features personal stories of the Andijan refugees. While working on the book and producing a documentary about labour migrants from Kyrgyzstan, Elin Jönsson became a full-fledged expert on the region. Elin kindly agreed to talk about her book and documentary in the interview with Ferghana.ru.

Kyrgyz Prime-Minister: “My Premiership in Hands of Ak Jol Party”

15.08.2008 22:18 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Igor Chudinov
Kyrgyz Prime-Minister Igor Chudinov may face dismissal after his cabinet was reprimanded by the President in late July for allegedly poor performance, inability to curb inflation, rising food prices and energy crisis. In the interview with the Reporter-Bishkek newspaper Chudinov said that ruling party Ak Jol would determine the fate of his premiership. In Kyrgyzstan parliamentary majority approves candidacies for Prime-Minister’s position suggested by the President. Since the current President Kurmanbek Bakiev took the office in March 2005 Kyrgyzstan has seen four different Prime-Ministers. Chudinov has been in the office for the past six months.

Central Asian States Should Start Negotiations over Water, Give Up Rigid Positions

11.08.2008 10:03 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Vadim Sokolov
Central Asian states should stop focusing only on their own claims and positions over management of trans-border water resources and start negotiation process and be open to compromise, Vadim Sokolov, Deputy Director of Scientific and Information Centre at the Interstate Committee for Water Management in Central Asia said in the interview to Ferghana.ru. One of the solutions could be developing energy saving ways in Kyrgyzstan, which has been overusing its hydro potential for energy production. Nearly 40 percent of electricity is being lost due to poor infrastructure and stealing.

Director of Cement Plant Pursues Libel Charges, Denies Wrongdoing

Director of Cement Plant Pursues Libel Charges, Denies Wrongdoing

07.08.2008 02:39 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

One of the major recent libel cases against the Kyrgyz Justice for All monthly legal bulletin will be heard on August 7 in Jalalabad city court in southern Kyrgyzstan. Abdumomun Mamaraimov, the bulletin's editor-in-chief, emphasized that the article simply discussed the origin of persistent rumours, but did not directly blame anyone. He also said when the article was prepared the company's administration refused to speak to either confirm or deny the rumours. However, Jan Fischer, in the interview to Fefghana.ru, said no one addressed him personally for clarifications prior to the publication.

Matthew Pringle: “Torture in Uzbekistan Hard to Eliminate Under Current Regime”

22.07.2008 19:48 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Matthew Pringle has served as Europe and Central Asia Program Officer at the Association for the Prevention of Torture. In the interview with Ferghana.ru he evaluates current situation with tortures in Uzbekistan, explains what APT does in this regard and what could be done to improve the situation.

Ministry of Agriculture: Kyrgyzstan is Out of Danger From Food Crisis

Ministry of Agriculture: Kyrgyzstan is Out of Danger From Food Crisis

18.07.2008 21:13 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Despite rising food prices, Kyrgyzstan is able to feed itself and avoid a crisis, Arstanbek Nogoyev, Kyrgyz Minister of Agriculture, said in a recent interview with the Reporter-Bishkek newspaper. The Minister also believes high world food prices might stimulate further development of the agricultural sector. “Our hard-working people are able to feed the country, they just need substantial support from the government,” Nogoyev said.

Central Asia: Water Shortage Due to Lack of Regional Agreements, Prompt Decision-Making

Central Asia: Water Shortage Due to Lack of Regional Agreements, Prompt Decision-Making

15.07.2008 22:51 msk Interview Central Asia

Lack of coordination over shared water usage between Central Asian states has led to significant shortages of water for irrigation at the height of the growing season, Vadim Sokolov, Deputy Director of Scientific and Information Centre at the Interstate Committee for Water Management in Central Asia, has told Ferghana.ru.

Bukhara Hospitals Packed with Wounded from Night Explosions, Eyewitness Says

Bukhara Hospitals Packed with Wounded from Night Explosions, Eyewitness Says

10.07.2008 22:55 msk Interview Uzbekistan

July 10 2008 will be remembered as one of the most dramatic days in the recent history of Bukhara. International community has been alarmed by series of blasts at the missile and artillery depot in the Kagan city military base in the Bukhara region. Missile shells were landing in different parts of the city scattering around numerous deadly splinters.

Academician Bekdjan Tashmukhammedov: Rainfall control may double Uzbekistan's water resources

08.07.2008 10:56 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan has raised no official objections, so far, to construction of the Koksarai water reservoir on the Syrdarja River in Kazakhstan, which began on June 26, 2008. Uzbek ecologists, however, do become upset when thinking about the effect the reservoir may have on filling the Aidar-Arnasai lake system, as well as on the climate of the Tashkent region. Ferghana.Ru news agency approached professor Bekdjan Tashmukhammedov for comment. The academician denied the existence of any particular threats to the Uzbek environment from the planned water reservoir in Kazakhstan. Further, Tashmukhammedov suggested rainfall control as a means of dealing with shortages of water in the Syrdarja basin, the problem affecting all countries of the region.

Ahmad Wali Masoud believes that investment in Afghanistan may be quite profitable

02.07.2008 12:16 msk Interview Afghanistan

Experts admit to being baffled by what is happening today in Afghanistan. Many militias and clans are battling with each other, foreign military contingents are spread throughout the country, the economy is thoroughly crime-ridden, and other factors contribute to a very complicated scenario. Also, a powerful religious presence and the absence of a nationwide center of power have their impact on the general state of affairs. Those experts who met on the Issyk-Kul shores of Kyrgyzstan in early June did their best to sort out the mess. The forum they attended was entitled "Afghanistan, Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Eurasian Security and Geopolitics". The following is an interview with Ahmad Wali Masoud, one of the organizers of the conference and the brother of the legendary Ahmad Shah Masoud, who led the Northern Alliance troops against the Talibs (Source: Ekspert Kazakhstan. Translated by Ferghana.Ru).

Fabrizio Vielmini: «Moscow lacks a clear strategy of action in Central Asia»

27.06.2008 14:22 msk Interview Central Asia

Fabrizio Vielmini
Fabrizio Vielmini, North Italian journalist and political scientist, was one of the participants in the international conference, "Afghanistan, Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Central Eurasian Security and Geopolitics" that took place on the shores of Lake Issyk-Kul in Kyrgyzstan on June 11-12. An expert from Piedmont, Italy, and an expatriate in Central Asia since 2002, Vielmini advances unusual views on the processes underway in the region. Ferghana.Ru approached Vielmini for comments on events in Afghanistan, NATO actions there, and Russia's potential involvement in the process of a settlement.

Mutabar Tajibayeva: «I'm not going to abandon human rights activities»

24.06.2008 10:58 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Mutabar Tadzhibaeva
In order to jail this woman, a lot of people were needed: the police, the National Security Service, representatives from the Presidential administration, prosecutors and judges. During the trial sessions the entire city of Dustabad was blockaded. She was accused for violating 18 articles of the Criminal Code of Uzbekistan and sentenced to eight years imprisonment. Authoritative international organizations, statesmen and governments of Western countries sought her release. She served two years and eight months of her imprisonment and underwent a serious operation during that time. She is Mutabar Tadzhibaeva, founder of the “Flaming Heart” Human Rights Club in Ferghana, and was considered by authorities of the republic to be a direct threat to its survival.

Valery Ivanov: "We have built 142 base objects in Afghanistan for its economy…"

22.06.2008 17:21 msk Interview Afghanistan

Is there a future of modern Afghanistan? Can Russia make a “comeback” to this country? What mechanisms of Russia and Shanghai Cooperation Organization could have to participate in the processes of settlement in Afghanistan and revival of its economy? Valery Nikolaevich Ivanov - a valid State Councilor of Russian Federation of the third rank in retirement, member of the Board of directors of the Russian-Afghan Business Council. Interview was prepared by Ferghana.ru Information Agency jointly with Radio Free Dolina ("The Valley of Peace or Disputes").

Telman Gdljan: I'm convinced that the Cotton Scandal would have never been possible these days

Telman Gdljan: I'm convinced that the Cotton Scandal would have never been possible these days

10.06.2008 17:16 msk Interview Uzbekistan

A recent newspaper series has published stories about those people who played a key role in post-communist Russian history. Telman Gdljan, a major investigator with the Prosecutor General's Office of the USSR from 1983 to 1990, was the first of such people to be interviewed. Gdljan was the news in the late 1980s as the investigator of the notorious Cotton Scandal that resulted in arrests, trials, and convictions of countless leaders of the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic.

Kyrgyzstan: What enemies will the brother protect the president from?

Kyrgyzstan: What enemies will the brother protect the president from?

04.06.2008 21:53 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Kurmanbek Bakiyev, President of Kyrgyzstan, has promoted his brother, Janybek Bakiyev, to become the next head of the State Protection Service. Unassuming at first sight, the post of chief of the presidential bodyguard is one of the central positions in the security structures framework. With Janybek in place, the brothers will control all state executives, including the prime minister, chairman of the parliament, and senior judges.

Michael Andersen: EU policy in Uzbekistan only a matter of geopolitical interests

13.05.2008 10:36 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Michael Andersen
Michael Andersen, prominent Danish journalist and political scientist, is completing work on a documentary on the Andijani tragedy in Uzbekistan in May 2005. The film depicts the background leading up to the tragedy and analyzes Western policy towards this Asian republic. "Politically, we are now - almost - back where we were before the massacre. The EU and the US are now again playing the "Great Game" with Russia and China, and Uzbekistan is one of the main prizes," Andersen said.

Artist Vyacheslav Useinov: One has to swim against the current

16.04.2008 13:35 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Фрактальный реализм Вячеслава Усеинова
Vyacheslav (Yuri) Useinov's personal exhibition "Fractal Realism" opens in the Fine Arts Gallery of the National Bank of Uzbekistan on April 17. Certain texts will be displayed along with paintings - seven pages of the poetic Fractal Realism Manifesto in Russia, Uzbek, English, and French. The prominent Uzbek artist owes the exhibition to help from the Swiss Agency of Development and Cooperation, Center of French Culture, Sarkor Telecom, and Fine Arts Gallery itself.

Kyrgyzstan: Kurmanbek Bakiyev's comment on the rumors

31.03.2008 18:41 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

President of Kyrgyzstan Kurmanbek Bakiyev returned from a nearly month-long course of medical treatment in Germany on March 28. Clearly healthy, he was met at the airport with applaud - with all of the country watching it on TV screens. In the meantime, few had believed he would ever come back because of the rumors circulating in Kyrgyzstan. Here is an interview with Bakiyev given the day following his return to Bishkek.

Opposition leader Azimbek Beknazarov threatens the Kyrgyz authorities

06.03.2008 18:31 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Radical Kyrgyz opposition headed by erstwhile Prosecutor General Beknazarov expects resignation of the president by March 24. Alternative power structures (analogous to what was established during the revolution in March 2005) are organized in the southern regions of Kyrgyzstan. The local authorities are seriously upset.

Uzbekistan: State officials use the Internet to leak what information they need known

22.02.2008 14:20 msk Interview Uzbekistan

Rumors that Rustam Azimov and nobody else is slated to become the next prime minister of Uzbekistan have been circulating for months now. Uzmetronom was the first to broach the matter of premier's replacement on February 21. Kazakhstan Today took it up. Ditto Lenta.ru. The government of Uzbekistan issued a denial, using INTERFAX news agency. Uzmetronom in the meantime kept sticking to its guns. Ferghana.Ru news agency phoned Uzmetronom journalist Sergei Yezhkov.

Kyrgyzstan: Omurbek Tekebayev predicts deterioration of the political situation soon

Kyrgyzstan: Omurbek Tekebayev predicts deterioration of the political situation soon

20.02.2008 10:58 msk Interview Kyrgyzstan

Bishkek newspaper Reporter interviewed Omurbek Tekebayev, leader of the prominent Ata-Meken party and erstwhile deputy and chairman of the Jogorku Kenesh (national legislature), on results of his trip to the United States and on the future of the alternative public parliament. Tekebayev said that establishment of Ata-Meken office in the United States would enable the Kyrgyz abroad to participate in "political processes taking place in the country." "Moreover, Ata-Meken applied for membership in the Socialist International. We believe that presence in Europe will greatly facilitate participation in international events," the politician said.

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