By empty (6/29/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)Tajik Interior Ministry troops are still trying to locate and neutralize former field commanders Rakhmon Sanginov and Mansur Muakkalov and their remaining followers, who have split up into small groups following the death or capture of dozens of their number earlier this week. Some of those groups have reportedly retreated to the Ramit gorge northeast of Dushanbe. On 27 June, "Vremya novostei" quoted unidentified commentators in Dushanbe as saying that Tajik President Imomali Rakhmonov would have preferred to try to negotiate with Sanginov, but ceded to pressure from other influential Tajik politicians, including Dushanbe mayor Mahmudsaid Ubaidullaev, who advocated the use of force.
By empty (6/27/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)A woman has been appointed Kazakhstan's deputy defense minister - the first woman to hold a ministerial post in the history of independent Kazakhstan. Jannat Ertlesova is a well-known economist who has worked at a senior level at the country's national bank, the finance ministry and in the presidential administration. Some observers have called it a victory for feminism but most people believe she was appointed because her economic expertise will be essential in the defense department which is facing problems of financial mismanagement.
By empty (6/26/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)Alla Dudaeva, the widow of first Chechen President Dzhokar Dudaev, has formed an initiative group that seeks to have the Nobel Prize committee strip Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn of his Nobel Prize because of his calls for restoring capital punishment for terrorists. While Lord Russell-Johnston, the chairman of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, said on 25 June that it was "a bitter thing" for him to hear "the author of the 'Gulag Archipelago' and other freedom-loving works end his career" with a call for the restoration of the death penalty. (Interfax).
By empty (6/27/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)A state committee for relations with religious organizations has been established in Azerbaijan in accordance with a decree signed by President Heidar Aliyev. Rafik Aliev, who was named to chair the committee said that the committee will monitor the activities of religious organizations and missionaries and ensure that those activities do not violate state laws. It will also engage in the publication of books and religious literature.
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.