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Dutch prosecutors investigate ING over possible role in corruption in Uzbekistan

  • Written by TCA

TASHKENT (TCA) — An investigation targeting Netherlands-based ING Bank is linked to bribes allegedly paid by the VimpelCom telecommunication services provider and other firms to the daughter of Uzbekistan's late president, Sputnik news agency reports citing Dutch media.

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Kyrgyz honey, nuts, dried fruits, and beans have potential for export to Europe

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — The first EU technical mission on GSP+ visited Kyrgyzstan in February to produce an assessment of the current state of play of testing laboratories available in Kyrgyzstan and specifically of those having international certification to approve the quality of products to be exported to the EU Member States. The mission has now presented a detailed report, shared with both the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic and the Delegation of the European Union to the country.

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Kazakhstan and UAE implement investment projects

  • Written by TCA

ASTANA (TCA) — Kazakhstan’s First Deputy Prime Minister Askar Mamin held talks with Vice Prime Minister, Minister for Affairs of the President of the United Arab Emirates Sheikh Mansur bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi on March 19 to discuss implementation of agreements reached at the highest level during the official visit of Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev to the UAE on 15-16 January 2017, including joint investment projects in key areas of cooperation, the official website of the Prime Minister of Kazakhstan reports.

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Afghanistan needs more US troops to help battle Taliban, IS

  • Written by TCA

KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan wants the United States to send more troops to help the Afghan government battle the Taliban and the Islamic State extremist group, Afghanistan’s foreign minister has said, RFE/RL reported.

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Book review: Security and Human Right to Water in Central Asia

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — The United Nations celebrates the World Water Day on March 22. This day focuses attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. World Water Day is also used to highlight improvements needed in access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities in developing countries.

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Turkish company to build a metal plant in Uzbekistan

  • Written by TCA

TASHKENT (TCA) — A new plant for production of industrial metal ware will be built this year in Uzbekistan with the participation of a Turkish company, the Jahon information agency reported.

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Turkmenistan adjusting to new reality of lower hydrocarbon prices — IMF

  • Written by TCA

ASHGABAT (TCA) — An International Monetary Fund (IMF) team led by Mr. Martin Sommer visited Ashgabat during March 6-17 to hold meetings to assess Turkmenistan’s macroeconomic and financial developments and discuss economic challenges and policy priorities with senior government officials, members of the Parliament, representatives of real and financial sectors, academics, and the diplomatic community, the IMF said.

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Turkmenistan president's son becomes head of parliamentary committee

  • Written by TCA

ASHGABAT (TCA) — State-run media in Turkmenistan reported on March 21 that Serdar Berdymukhammedov, the only son of Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov, has become the chairman of the parliament's legal affairs committee, RFE/RL reports.

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With tensions high, Kazakhstan plays mediator in Syria peace talks

  • Written by George Voloshin

ASTANA (TCA) — As the Syria peace talks in Astana have given more international exposure to Kazakhstan as a player in the region wider than Central Asia, we are republishing this article by George Voloshin, originally published by The Jamestown Foundation’s Eurasia Daily Monitor:

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U.S. and Tajik security forces to conduct crisis response exercise

  • Written by TCA

DUSHANBE (TCA) — From March 27 through April 7, the U.S. Department of Defense will conduct a training exercise in partnership with Tajik security forces, the U.S. Embassy in Dushanbe said on March 20.

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New plant opens in south Kyrgyzstan with EU support

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — A new plant for production of plastic pipes for drip irrigation has officially opened in Ala-Buka village of Ala-Buka district in Jalal-Abad province in southern Kyrgyzstan, the Delegation of the European Union to the Kyrgyz Republic said.

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Uzbekistan: human rights activist forced into psychiatric detention

  • Written by Madeline Roache*

LONDON (TCA) — A prominent human rights activist has been forcibly subjected to psychiatric treatment in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. On March 1, 2017 Yelena Urlayeva, the chairperson of the Human Rights Alliance of Uzbekistan (HRAU) was arrested by police, who called an emergency psychiatric ambulance which transported her to hospital.

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Turkmenistan plans to establish free economic zones

  • Written by TCA

ASHGABAT (TCA) — The government of Turkmenistan is working on a draft concept for the establishment of free economic zones in the country until 2023, the State News Agency of Turkmenistan reported.

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Russia assures Afghanistan that contacts with Taliban limited to peace process

  • Written by TCA

KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan’s Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani says that Russian officials have assured the Afghan government that contacts between Russia and the Taliban are aimed only at persuading the insurgent group to endorse peace talks with the Afghan government, TOLOnews agency reported on March 19.

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Germany to spend 20 million euros for Afghanistan jobs program

  • Written by TCA

KABUL (TCA) — Afghanistan’s Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development last week said that Germany was set to inject nearly 20 million euros into Afghanistan’s National Employment Program, TOLOnews agency reported.

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Russia to host talks on Afghan conflict, US and Central Asia states invited

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — Russia plans to host international talks on the conflict in Afghanistan on April 14, Hanif Atmar, the Afghan president’s national security adviser, told RFE/RL’s Radio Free Afghanistan on March 18.

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Kyrgyzstan struggling with consequences of illegal construction instead of preventing it

  • Written by Maria Levina

BISHKEK (TCA) — Several illegally constructed facilities have recently been demolished in the Kyrgyz capital including a 4-storey office building in downtown Bishkek (at the intersection of Toktogul Street and Manas Avenue).

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Weekly Digest of Central Asia

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — The Publisher’s note: Central Asia is an important geopolitical area between Europe, Russia and China. It is in Central Asia that world powers have confronted each other for centuries; it is here that China needs to succeed with its new Silk Road Belt for direct access to the Western markets; and it is here that a large wealth of raw materials has its origin. Every week thousands of news appears all over the world in printed and online media and it is quite understandable that many of them may escape the attention of busy readers. At The Times of Central Asia, we strongly believe that more information can better contribute to peaceful development and better knowledge of the region, and for this reason we are presenting this Weekly Digest of Central Asia which compiles what other media have reported during the past week.

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EBRD is re-engaging with Uzbekistan

  • Written by TCA

TASHKENT (TCA) — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed an agreement with the government of Uzbekistan to explore ways of increasing its investment activity in the country. The Memorandum of Understanding was signed by EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti and the authorities in the Uzbek capital, Tashkent, the EBRD press office said.

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OSCE Centre in Ashgabat supports education of future diplomats in Turkmenistan

  • Written by TCA

ASHGABAT (TCA) — A one-week course on diplomacy for teaching staff and students of the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan and the International University for Humanities and Development, supported by the OSCE Centre in Ashgabat, concluded on March 17 in Ashgabat.

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Turkmenistan reportedly supplies ammunition to Taliban to protect future gas pipeline?

  • Written by TCA

ASHGABAT (TCA) — Earlier this month the media reported that the former Minister of Energy and Water Resources of Afghanistan and ex-governor of Herat province, Ismail Khan, accused the Turkmen government of supporting the Taliban by supplying ammunition to Taliban militants in Afghanistan’s Herat province. Turkmen authorities have denied the allegation.

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China to build residential housing in Afghanistan

  • Written by TCA

KABUL (TCA) — China and Afghanistan have agreed to enhance cooperation in the field of urbanization and city development in Afghanistan, Xinhua news agency reports.

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US welcomes India’s Chabahar port plan in Iran as beneficial for Afghanistan

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — The United States has welcomed India’s plan to expand Iran’s Chabahar port as a project that a top US military official says will help the long-term stability of Afghanistan, Iran’s PressTV news agency reported on March 16.

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Kazakhstan and Belarus set to expand trade and economic cooperation

  • Written by TCA

ASTANA (TCA) — Belarus is going to restore its trade with Kazakhstan to $1 billion, Belarusian Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov said during a meeting with Kazakhstan’s parliamentary delegation headed by Mazhilis Speaker Nurlan Nigmatulin in Minsk on March 16, BelTA news agency reported.

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The main security threat to Central Asia comes from Afghanistan — Russian FM

  • Written by TCA

BISHKEK (TCA) — Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov believes that the main security threat in Central Asia comes from Afghanistan.

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