by Ariela Shapiro (07/10/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
On May 27, Russian border troops in South Ossetia started building barbed wire fences beyond the occupation line and into undisputed Georgian territory. These incursions, termed “borderization operations” by the Russian administration, are an estimated 25 kilometers in length and extend between 50-300 meters beyond the occupation line. While the U.S. State Department and European Union Monitoring Mission (EUMM) all promptly reacted by describing the fence building as “unacceptable” and “concerning,” neither were able to prevent or cease the construction. These actions demonstrate how Russia views the post-2008 “new geopolitical realities” and that Putin intends to dictate the terms and parameters of any “normalizing” of relations with Georgia.
by Mina Muradova (06/26/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
Russia and Azerbaijan have recently terminated two strategic agreements. In May, the Russian government terminated a 1996 deal to transport oil from Azerbaijan through its pipeline system. The agreement on transporting Azerbaijani oil via the Baku-Novorossiysk pipeline envisaged the transit of at least five million metric tons of oil a year, with a tariff of about US$ 15.70 per metric ton.
by Erica Marat (06/26/2013 issue of the CACI Analyst)
The Kyrgyz parliament has voted to support President Almazbek Atambaev’s decision to renounce the contract for the U.S. transit center at Manas airport. The main reasons for the parliament’s vote were primarily a response to the Kremlin’s decision to write off a large chunk of Kyrgyzstan’s debt and to Moscow’s promise to construct hydropower plants in Kyrgyzstan, as well as to Washington’s abrupt decision to dismiss criminal charges against Maksim Bakiev, son of former president Kurmanbek Bakiev. In the meantime, uncertainty lingers regarding the finality of the parliament’s decision and how the president will proceed with his plan to build an international transit hub at Manas once the U.S. leaves.
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.