Baktybek Abdrisaev

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Events in Kyrgyzstan have once again seized headlines. Five years ago, in March 2005, the Tulip Revolution blossomed: Crowds upset by a falsified election stormed the main government building in Bishkek, the capital, and chased out then-President Askar Akayev. This week, after widespread riots in which security forces opened fire on opposition protesters, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev escaped the capital in a plane. A temporary people's government announced that it has taken power, with former foreign minister Roza Otunbayeva in charge.

For Kyrgyzstan, a mountainous nation that prided itself on being an "island of democracy" in Central Asia after the collapse of the Soviet Union, events represent a second chance to get back on track.…  Seguir leyendo »

For two weeks, the U.S. struggle to hold on to its last air base in Central Asia has made headlines, and the vote in Kyrgyzstan's parliament yesterday to close Manas Air Base will spark still more coverage. Analysts have rushed to portray this as a new chess match between a resurgent Russian Federation and a recalibrating United States; just as a new American president seeks to bolster the U.S. presence in Afghanistan, the principal land corridor from Pakistan is severed through a bridge bombing and the likely air base closure threatens the Obama administration's plan. The oversimplified but oft-repeated explanation is that Kremlin pressure is the source of Washington's predicament.…  Seguir leyendo »