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Crossroads Asia

Prominent Karakalpak Activists Aqylbek Muratbai Facing Extradition From Kazakhstan to Uzbekistan

Prominent Karakalpak Activists Aqylbek Muratbai Facing Extradition From Kazakhstan to Uzbekistan

By Catherine Putz
Muratbai has been a vital voice in calling attention to Uzbekistan's persecution of the Karakalpak people. His detention in Kazakhstan is yet another warning shot.

Japan’s Role in Healing the Aral Sea and Engaging Central Asia

Japan’s Role in Healing the Aral Sea and Engaging Central Asia

By Wilder Alejandro Sánchez and Marin Ekstrom
Tokyo is a quiet but important partner to Central Asia, with notable engagement on projects related to the Aral Sea.
Germany Becomes First EU Country to Forge Strategic Partnership With Mongolia

Germany Becomes First EU Country to Forge Strategic Partnership With Mongolia

By Bolor Lkhaajav
The new strategic partnership is carrying Germany-Mongolia relations beyond the traditional framework of cooperation into mutual support on the international stage.

Smugglers and Scammers Make Wild Promises to Uzbeks Desperate to Reach US

Smugglers and Scammers Make Wild Promises to Uzbeks Desperate to Reach US

By Catherine Putz
Uzbek citizens interested in getting to the United States are confronted with a confusing miasma of regulations, made all the more murky by disinformation and scammers. 

Climate Change Is Fueling the Disappearance of the Aral Sea

Climate Change Is Fueling the Disappearance of the Aral Sea

By Victoria Milko
It's taking residents' livelihoods, too

Controversial Kyrgyz ‘Foreign Representatives’ Bill on Cusp of Becoming Law

Controversial Kyrgyz ‘Foreign Representatives’ Bill on Cusp of Becoming Law

By Catherine Putz
Despite opposition, both foreign and domestic, Kyrgyzstan continues to push forward a law that would enact further restrictions on organizations receiving funding from abroad.

Can Kazakhstan Stay the Course on Economic Reform?

Can Kazakhstan Stay the Course on Economic Reform?

By Bryn Windsor
As Astana moves from crisis management to long-term planning mode, the challenge will be whether the government can stick to its economic reform plans. 
Bishkek’s Ever Problematic Power Plant Explodes

Bishkek’s Ever Problematic Power Plant Explodes

By Catherine Putz
Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov pledged to order a “complete modernization” of the plant after a February 2 explosion.

Kazakhstan Appoints a New Government

Kazakhstan Appoints a New Government

By Paolo Sorbello
It’s a timid reshuffling that is unlikely to shake things up.

Mongolia Commits to Fighting Corruption With International Help

Mongolia Commits to Fighting Corruption With International Help

By Bolor Lkhaajav
Corruption has been a perennial issue for Mongolia, but public outrage has sparked a new anti-corruption strategy from the government.

Early Notice: Kyrgyz President Japarov Will Seek Second Term

Early Notice: Kyrgyz President Japarov Will Seek Second Term

By Catherine Putz
Kyrgyzstan’s next presidential election isn’t due until 2027, but Central Asia doesn’t always stick to schedule – making early chatter about a second term interesting. 
The Unexonerated Speak: A New Documentary Sheds Light on Uzbekistan’s Dark Past

The Unexonerated Speak: A New Documentary Sheds Light on Uzbekistan’s Dark Past

By Catherine Putz
Thousands were imprisoned under the regime of Islam Karimov, unjustly convicted on religious extremism and other charges. Many have been freed, but they remain unexonerated. 

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