By Ahmed Rashid (9/27/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan continue to accuse Tajikistan of allowing scores of Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) guerrillas entering its territory from northern Afghanistan and crossing into southwestern Kyrgyzstan and northwestern Uzbekistan in their bid to enter the Ferghana Valley. On August 25, Uzbek President Islam Karimov accused Tajik government ministers, who are members of the United Tajik Opposition (UTO) made up of former Islamic groups and now partners in the Tajik coalition government, of clandestinely helping the IMU. In particular, President Karimov accused the Tajik Minister of Emergencies and former UTO leader Mirzo Ziyoev of helping the rebels, a charge Ziyoev denied.
By Professor Stephen Blank (10/25/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Russia is a party to many, if not all, of the efforts to resolve or at least confront the security challenges originating in Afghanistan. Yet earlier this year Moscow appeared ready to forsake a political resolution in favor of a military strike or bombing raids on Afghanistan. Russia's military-political leadership went to great lengths to threaten Kabul and the Taliban and to announce publicly that it could, if it chose, emulate the United States' forceful reply to the bombing of its Tanzanian and Ugandan embassies in 1998.
By Kornely Kakachia (10/25/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: With the collapse of the Soviet Union and as a result of national disintegration, several conflict zones were formed. Most of them were created by the Kremlin and supported by the Communist elite as well as by ultra-nationalist leaders among ethnic minorities. As a result, several long-lasting conflicts were initiated in the Caucasus including the Georgian-Abkhaz, Georgian-Ossetian, and Nagorno-Karabakh conflicts characterized by chaos, clan-relationships and power-vacuums could last for another hundred years should the international community neglect them.
By Rustem Safronov (10/25/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: The Uzbekistani, Azerbaijani, and Kazakhstani successes in Sydney come as little surprise given that their athletes excelled in boxing and wrestling during Soviet times while the republics in the Caucasus traditionally produced top weightlifters and wrestlers. Recall, for example, the victories in the 1970s of the boxers Serik Konokbaev and Rufat Riskiev. The West recognized these athletes as "Russians," when in fact they hailed from Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, respectively.
The Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst is a biweekly publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program, a Joint Transatlantic Research and Policy Center affiliated with the American Foreign Policy Council, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst has brought cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.