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Islam in Central Asia

The Revival of Islam in Turkmenistan
June 30, 2022

The Revival of Islam in Turkmenistan

By Merdan Amanov
Although Islam has been a part of Turkmen culture for centuries, public practice of Islam was largely suppressed during the Soviet Union and in the early independence era, too.

Uzbek Justice Ministry Sounds Alarm Over Divisive Religious Messaging
February 15, 2022

Uzbek Justice Ministry Sounds Alarm Over Divisive Religious Messaging

By Umida Hashimova
The Justice Ministry is alarmed about religious figures whose teachings blur the line between religion, their personal moral views, and the law.
Is Syria Still Calling to Would-be Uzbek Militants?
December 10, 2021

Is Syria Still Calling to Would-be Uzbek Militants?

By Umida Hashimova
With a series of recent arrests, it seems Uzbek authorities believe that Syria remains an attractive destination for prospective fighters.

Understanding Tazabek, a Kazakh Islamic Celebrity
October 27, 2020

Understanding Tazabek, a Kazakh Islamic Celebrity

By Issatay Minuarov
A newly introduced weekly program on a Kazakh state TV channel has sparked sharp public criticism and a campaign against its host – Mukhamedzhan Tazabek.

Religion, Beards, and Uzbekistan’s Secular Government
September 09, 2019

Religion, Beards, and Uzbekistan’s Secular Government

By Umida Hashimova
The president of Uzbekistan reacted with new appointment and policy changes following the latest beard-shaving raids.

Kyrgyzstan Attempts to Isolate Local Islam
August 28, 2019

Kyrgyzstan Attempts to Isolate Local Islam

By Elmurat Ashiraliev
Kyrgyz authorities profess a separation of state and religion while also paradoxically preferring one version of Islam.

Islamic Tourism Has Great Potential in Uzbekistan
May 15, 2019

Islamic Tourism Has Great Potential in Uzbekistan

By Surayyo Usmanova
As Uzbekistan opens to the world, its many important religious sites can form the base of a tourism boom.
What is Tashkent’s Tolerance for Conservative Islam?
October 01, 2018

What is Tashkent’s Tolerance for Conservative Islam?

By Umida Hashimova
Uzbekistan defines the tolerance level in free speech and reveals its fear of conservative Islam.

Conservative Religious Bloggers Detained in Uzbekistan
September 06, 2018

Conservative Religious Bloggers Detained in Uzbekistan

By Catherine Putz
The arrests cast a pall on Uzbekistan's reform efforts and illustrate the boundaries of Tashkent's tolerance for debate.

Tradition and Changing Ideals Collide in Post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan
April 04, 2018

Tradition and Changing Ideals Collide in Post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan

By Toby A. Cox
Some Kyrgyz people believe that Nooruz collides with Muslim values, but the vast majority still celebrate anyway.

Tajikistan and Central Asia's Culture Wars
July 12, 2017

Tajikistan and Central Asia's Culture Wars

By Catherine Putz
There’s no unweaving history’s tapestry in Central Asia.
Nuance Needed: Religious Laws and Enforcement in Tajikistan
May 27, 2017

Nuance Needed: Religious Laws and Enforcement in Tajikistan

By Catherine Putz
“Do people know what the laws are? If not, do the laws matter?”

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