• KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01126 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00226 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09196 0.77%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 4

Central Asia and Turkey Serving as Way-Points for Russia’s Explosives Imports

Citing an analysis of trade data, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) has reported that Russia has boosted its imports of an explosive compound critical to the production of artillery ammunition - including from companies based in the U.S. and other Western countries and allies - despite international sanctions meant to choke Moscow's wartime production. Russian imports of nitrocellulose, a highly flammable cotton product central to gunpowder and rocket propellant production, surged 70% in 2022, the first year of Moscow's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and midway through 2023 imports amounted to 3,039 tons of the product - nearly double the 2021 level. Another supplier of cotton pulp, China, increased its supplies after U.S. and European (EU) sanctions. However, according to Liu Pengyu, spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy in Washington, "Sino-Russian economic and trade cooperation is not directed against any third party and should not be violated or coerced by any third party... China does not sell weapons to parties involved in the Ukraine crisis and handles exports of dual-use goods in a reasonable manner in accordance with laws and regulations." According to Russian customs data provided by trade database, Import Genius, Turkish company Noy İç Ve Diş Ti̇caret accounted for nearly half of Russia's nitrocellulose imports since the Russia-Ukraine conflict began, with most of the Istanbul-based company's sales to Russian companies that are government contractors based in Moscow. The Turkish Embassy, as well as representatives of the company, declined to comment. Nitrocellulose supplies to Russia have also been found to contain chemical tracers from the U.S. company, International Flavors & Fragrances, which suspended its direct shipments to Russia in April 2022 but continued them through third countries. The company said its product didn't contain enough nitrogen to be a component of an explosive. However, Michelle Pantoja, a professor of mechanical engineering at Texas Tech University who heads the combustion laboratory's research center, said the nitrogen content of civilian nitrocellulose could be increased to the required level. In December, the U.S. Department of Commerce added nitrocellulose to its list of high-priority controlled commodities, which restricts its exports, and the Treasury Department said it would impose sanctions on banks or other institutions found to be financing such international trades. To be effective, however, sanctions must also apply to nitrocellulose supplier companies, said a Rand analyst. Last year, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) claimed to have documents in its possession which showed that more than 98% of nitrocellulose imported into Russia is supplied by Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, and that imports have increased since Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The Import Genius database revealed that in 2022 and early 2023, Fergana Chemical Plant, one of the largest cotton pulp producers in Uzbekistan, not only supplied raw materials to Russian importing companies, but also made direct shipments to two Russian gunpowder plants - one in Kazan, the other in Perm - worth more than $2.2 million. In total, according to a joint investigation by Important Stories, OCCRP and Vlast.kz, the plant supplied 2,700...

Tajikistan Warns Against “Unverified” Reports About Moscow Attack

Tajikistan is warning against “fake information” about the alleged role of Tajik citizens in the attack that killed more than 100 people at a concert venue in Moscow. Tajikistan’s foreign ministry said on Saturday that it had not received confirmation from Russian authorities about any involvement of Tajiks in the attack at the Crocus City complex. The ministry asked media to rely on “official information” distributed by Russian authorities. The Afghanistan branch of the Islamic State group (ISKP) claimed responsibility for the mass shooting on Friday night. Telegram and other social media platforms are swirling with allegations that Tajik citizens were involved. Large numbers of Tajik migrants live in Russia, many enduring difficult conditions in hostels while struggling to find work. “We emphasize that the Tajik side has not received any confirmation from the Russian authorities regarding the currently circulating fake information about the involvement of citizens of Tajikistan,” the ministry said in a statement. “Keep in mind that the dissemination of unverified and unreliable information could harm the citizens of Tajikistan currently abroad,” the ministry said. Russia said it has arrested 11 suspects and that an investigation is ongoing. Tajikistan was among several Central Asian states that condemned the attack and sent condolences to relatives and friends of the dead. President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev of Kazakhstan spoke by telephone to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday, Kazakhstan’s presidential press office said. “The head of our state strongly condemned the brutal act of violence against civilians and reaffirmed solidarity with Russia in the fight against terrorism,” the press office said. Kazakhstan has offered the help of its law enforcement agencies to Russia if needed and Uzbekistan’s presidential office said those responsible for the attack “will be assured of the inevitability of punishment.” Several bouquets of flowers were laid outside the Russian embassy in Astana, Kazakhstan. Video recorded by witnesses at the Moscow venue showed several gunmen roaming the atrium and other parts of the entertainment complex, opening fire on civilians. A large blaze also broke out at the building during the attack and was later extinguished. On Feb. 27, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu spoke of threats coming from extremists in Afghanistan and prioritized “ensuring military security in the Central Asian strategic area.” Shoigu said the number of ISKP militants in Afghanistan had increased by 15% in the past year. He said their key objectives were to spread radical ideology and to conduct subversive activities on the southern borders of the Collective Security Treaty Organization. The organization, CSTO, is a Russian-led security alliance that includes Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan. “Radicals from Central Asia have accounted for a notable share of recent Islamic State-inspired or -directed plots and attacks in the United States, Europe, Turkey, and Iran,” Lucas Webber and Riccardo Valle wrote in a Hudson Institute analysis last year. In September 2022, ISKP – which vehemently opposes Russia’s support for the regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria - claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing at the Russian embassy in Kabul...

Russia Detains Suspects with Tajik Passports – Death Toll Rises to 133

Russia has announced the arrest of eleven individuals, including four who are suspected of carrying out a deadly shooting at a concert hall near Moscow, marking the most lethal incident of its kind in the country in two decades. The attack, which resulted in the death of 143 people and counting, according to state TV, was claimed by the Islamic State militant group. However, Russian authorities are trying to forge a potential connection to Ukraine, despite strong denials from Ukrainian officials regarding any involvement. The death toll was later revised to 133. The Federal Security Service (FSB) of Russia has reported the apprehension of the "four terrorists" as they were allegedly attempting to cross into Ukraine, repeatedly mentioning that the suspects had connections within Ukraine. They are currently being transported to Moscow for further investigation. Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, expressed on Telegram that the suspects had intended to flee to Ukraine to evade capture, stating, “Now we know in which country these bloody bastards planned to hide from pursuit.” In response to Moscow’s attempts to pin the atrocity on Ukraine and bolster waning support for Putin’s war, Andriy Yusov, a spokesman for Ukrainian military intelligence, refuted the claims of Ukraine's involvement, emphasizing his nation’s focus on defending its sovereignty and targeting military objectives, not civilians. He dismissed the FSB's assertion regarding the suspects' intended escape to Ukraine as another fabrication by Russian intelligence services. No evidence has been presented to support the theory of a Ukrainian link. Russian lawmaker Alexander Khinshtein revealed that the assailants had escaped in a Renault vehicle, which was later identified by police in the Bryansk region, approximately 210 miles southwest of Moscow. Upon refusal to comply with police instructions to stop, the vehicle was searched, uncovering a pistol, an assault rifle magazine, and passports from Tajikistan. In a video shown on state TV, a suspect stated that he had been paid 500,000 roubles ($5,425) by unknown people via Telegram to carry out the atrocity.

Two Years On from Invasion of Ukraine, Attitudes Towards Russia in Central Asia Have Changed

Tomorrow will mark the two year anniversary of the start of Russia's so-called special military operation in Ukraine. In that time, many people in Central Asia have begun to openly call this action an invasion and a war. This is a war between two countries that are close in many respects, two former republics from a large union that the nations of Central Asia were also part of. How and why has the attitude of Central Asians towards Russia and Ukraine changed in the last two years? The attacks on Ukraine were felt immediately in Central Asia, from the first day when migrants suddenly started arriving from the north. These were mostly young people, sometimes in groups, and sometimes with their families. It quickly became clear that this exodus was comprised of people who did not want to fight, and there were many of them. Also from day one, even though there are many ethnic Russians living in Kazakhstan, the new migrants were noticeably different from the local Russian faces. Their behavior and mode of dress were not the same as those already residing in Tashkent, Bishkek or Almaty. From the very beginning, there were conflicts although mostly they amounted to little more than drunken brawls that were soon forgotten. In February 2022, the cost of residential rentals skyrocketed following the attack on Ukraine, but prices seem to have since stabilized. Overall, though, most locals treated their new neighbors with understanding. Nobody wants war. Especially since, in the countries of this region, people still remember or at least heard stories about the evacuation of a large number of people from Russia and Ukraine during the Second World War. In those times, many children whose parents died during the occupation of western portions of the USSR by Germany found second families and second homes. Uzbeks, Tajiks, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, Uyghurs, Tatars - many Central Asians who had the opportunity adopted children from war-torn republics of the Soviet Union. Perhaps the most fundamental change is felt in the attitude of Central Asian people towards Russia as something immutable and monumental. Something previously unthinkable transpired: despite all its economic and political power, this huge northern neighbor could also be viewed as vulnerable. The fact that Ukraine is obviously not alone in its war against Russia  does not change this perception. In Central Asia, it is often said that in any negative situation, one must look for positive opportunities, and in a tangential way, the years of restrictions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic served as preparation for the trials brought by the war. A realization had come to pass that it was necessary to prepare oneself to rely solely on domestic resources. The war further complicated a precarious situation as sanctions imposed on Russia also hit Central Asia. First, the financial system went into meltdown, then trade, and then the production sector, much of which was tied to the Russian economy. However, this situation forced Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan to look for new...

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