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Is Kazakhstan’s rising star fading?

Introduction Kazakhstan’s economic prosperity and active foreign policy have given it increasing regional power status. Kazakhstan has stood out internationally as a mediator in conflicts, chair of international fora and...

Towards a new EU Strategy for Central Asia

Tactics or Strategy? Ten years after the inception of the European Union’s (EU) Strategy for Central Asia, in June 2017 the European Council initiated a process to develop a new...

Renewing EU and US Soft Power in Central Asia

Western influence in Central Asia is at an all-time low since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Europe – the European Union (EU) and...

Civil Society Cornered in Central Asia

Introduction Civil society and independent voices in Central Asia are increasingly under pressure from the authorities. Repression has intensified over the past five years, against a backdrop of a decline...

On a positive note…

Opportunities for Central Asia Central Asia receives rather limited attention when compared to other parts of the world, and when it does, it is often not good news: authoritarian regimes,...

Implementation and review of the European Union – Central Asia Strategy: Recommendations for EU...

This paper, commissioned by the European Parliament, assesses the implementation of the European Union (EU) Strategy for Central Asia and outlines a series of recommendations with a view to...

Mastering a Façade democracy: elections in Uzbekistan

President Islam Karimov of Uzbekistan has been re-elected after scoring 90 per cent of votes at the Uzbek general elections held on 29 March 2015. According to offcial estimates,...

Reviewing the EU’s approach to Central Asia

Introduction(1) The European Union’s (EU) Strategy for Central Asia is being reviewed for the fourth time. Over the last eight years, the EU has been successful in creating several institutionalised...

EU-Kyrgyzstan human rights diplomacy: good effort but weak follow-up

On 29-30 October, the 5th EUKyrgyzstan Civil Society Seminar(CSS) was held in Osh in southKyrgyzstan, where the violent June 2010 ethnic clashes took place. This year’s topic was the...

What role for the European Parliament in Central Asia?

The challenges – internally and externally – for the new European legislature are numerous. Despite being only a small part of the puzzle, Central Asia should also be on...