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Though some changes in the poll formats hint at New Kazakhstan, the president’s words are ominously reminiscent of Old Kazakhstan.
Kremlin nevertheless bristled at top diplomat’s arrival, saying “there is no place for the democratisation experiments of Washington”.
Gripes over power exports, railway contracts and Afghan warplanes seized by Tashkent cause friction.
Each time he appears to near the prize, difficulties caused by external events seem to snatch it away.
Gone is the era when Uzbekistan’s late president Islam Karimov was walling off his country from its immediate neighbours.
Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov returns as head of state, albeit with a different title. The word is, son and president Serdar has proved a bad negotiator.
Turkmen President Serdar Berdimuhamedov’s visit to Beijing may not have secured more gas sales, but it did serve to reaffirm ties with the country’s only stable major partner.
President Berdimuhamedov may have put Turkish counterpart Erdogan’s nose out of joint by shelving pipeline interconnector proposal.
Kazakhstan’s re-elected president has seven years to show he really does understand the meaning of the word he mouths so often, “reform”.
With victory in this weekend’s snap poll a formality, the president will already be thinking about how to rebalance relations with Russia, China and the West.
As mutual recriminations fly over September’s short war, both Bishkek and Dushanbe are busy equipping their militaries with more arms.
Amid row over land deal with Uzbekistan, 22 critics of the government are detained. The stage is set for unrest.
The disastrous Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused a geopolitical tectonic shift. The five ‘stans’ are looking at other foreign partner options.
Serdar Berdimuhamedov, the head of state who rarely smiles, has also given his country little reason to do so.
The current increase in wholesale energy prices in Europe has prompted governments to try to shield consumers from the direct impact of an energy crisis that is sweeping the Continent and the rising prices that are costing hundreds of billions.
Term “border clash” not sufficient for “some of the most violent and consequential” days in the independent history of Central Asia.
Disparate interests of organisation’s member nations meant many major issues of the day could not even be discussed. But there was only one dominant member: China.
Though Russia has offered to mediate, a feeling prevails among some parties that the Kremlin is supportive of Tajik strongman Rahmon.
Most important discussions and agreements at Samarkand gathering likely to concern regional connectivity, and the odd men out are Russia and Belarus.