Region

Central Asia

Stories under this heading cover Central Asia – a region of Asia, stretching from the Caspian Sea in the west to Mongolia in the east, from Afghanistan in the south to Russia in the north.

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Improvised oral poetry remains a popular entertainment in Kazakhstan

In Kazakhstan,  improvised oral poetry, spoken or sung to the accompaniment of traditional musical instruments, has for centuries been a source of entertainment. The Kazakh government has since independence in 1991 been keen to promote the tradition, known in Kazakh as Akyndar Aitysy, since this is seen as a way of consolidating national identity.

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Editor's choice
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Improvised oral poetry remains a popular entertainment in Kazakhstan

In Kazakhstan,  improvised oral poetry, spoken or sung to the accompaniment of traditional musical instruments, has for centuries been a source of entertainment. The Kazakh government has since independence in 1991 been keen to promote the tradition, known in Kazakh as Akyndar Aitysy, since this is seen as a way of consolidating national identity.
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Tokayev calls for an increased state of readiness in Kazakhstan armed forces

Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev called on the leadership of the military to closely monitor the rapidly changing situation in the world, both globally and in some regions. According to him, the current security architecture is in crisis. Tokayev said he  believes that internal unrest and revolutions will inevitably affect the integrity of the country.
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EU-Central Asia relations moving forward

The EU reaffirmed its wish to strengthen its role as a partner for the Central Asian countries in their reform processes, as a supporter of their integration in the world trading system and of their efforts to work closely together.
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Beijing charm offensive in Central Asia

The visit of the Chinese foreign minister to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Mongolia was a clear indication that Beijing is determined to maintain its special, and often privileged position in the region but not everyone was convinced
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Opinion: Re-evaluating the idea of ‘Putinism’

Opinion: Re-evaluating the idea of ‘Putinism’

The pillars of Putinism can be routed back to a Soviet-era understanding of international relations and contested world order and see the 'westernisation' of the domestic or regional environment in the vicinity of Russia's 'sphere of key interests' as a source of concern., writes Edward Abrahamyan