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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Taliban say victory over the Americans was a divine blessing

Taliban say victory over the Americans was a divine blessing

In a statement marking Afghan independence day, the Taliban said that "Fortunately, today we are celebrating the anniversary of independence from Britain. We at the same time as a result of our jihadi resistance forced another arrogant power of the world, the United States, to fail and retreat from our holy territory of Afghanistan".
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The Taliban settle in

The Taliban settle in

Whilst Taliban fighters made themselves at home at the presidential office in Kabul, and in other government offices across the capital, the leadership of the Taliban appears to be still concentrated in the city of Kandahar, in the South of the country, the power base of this mainly Pashtun movement. It was to there that the Taliban’s co-founder and political leader, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, flew to from Doha on Tuesday as the militants pledged peaceful relations with other countries and respect for the rights of women.
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Yankee come back!

Yankee come back!

During the cold war, the slogan "Yankee Go Home" was often seen or heard in many third world countries fighting against US domination. It is ironic that fifty years later, there are those in Kabul who are now shouting "Yankee come back". For many young Afghans the US presence had opened the possibility of a new way of life. At least in Kabul many are sad to see the Americans go. But as president Biden made it clear yesterday, there is no going back. American attempts at state-building in Afghanistan are over, and that has widespread consequences that are yet to fully unfold.
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Its official: there are now 19 million Kazakhs

Its official: there are now 19 million Kazakhs

Kazakhstan is currently going through a period of rapid change as president Tokayev pushes forward a number of reforms and tries to stir a more independent foreign policy, despite the fact that Kazakhstan, a land locked country, is often seen as being sandwiched between China and Russia. Speaking at a summit of Central Asian states held in Turkmenistan on Friday (6 August) Tokayev said Central Asia should operate as “a connecting bridge between Asia and Europe.”
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Mirziyoev nominated for second term as president of Uzbekistan ahead of October elections

Mirziyoev nominated for second term as president of Uzbekistan ahead of October elections

Uzbekistan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party announced on 7 August it was nominating Shavkat Mirziyoev for a second term as president in the forthcoming October elections. Since coming to power in 2016 Mirziyoev has launched an ambitious reform agenda and has sought to end Uzbekistan's international isolation.
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Taliban enter Helmand

Taliban enter Helmand

Taliban fighters appear poised to capture the strategically and symbolically important city of Helmand in southern Afghanistan. Afghan security forces and Taliban fighters have been locked in heavy clashes for the last two days after the insurgents entered the city which is also the capital of the southern province that bears the same name. Sources say many civilians are trying to flee the city.
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Tashkent hosts major conference focusing on Central and South Asia

Tashkent hosts major conference focusing on Central and South Asia

Speaking at the start of one of the largest international events to take place in the Uzbek capital for decades, the president of Uzbekistan, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, spoke of the need for the revival of mutual ties in Central and South Asia, where about two billion people live today. Regional and world leaders are attending the International Conference “Central and South Asia: Regional Interconnectedness. Challenges and Opportunities”, including high level officials from the EU and the US, the President of Afghanistan, the Prime Minister of Pakistan, the foreign ministers of the Central and South Asian countries, and delegations from 44 countries and about 30 international organisations.