Uzbekistan

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Brutal Uzbek Dictator Dies

Karimov's henchmen boiled dissidents alive

(Newser) - Islam Karimov, who crushed all opposition in the Central Asian country of Uzbekistan as its only president in a quarter-century of independence from the Soviet Union, has died of a stroke at age 78, the Uzbek government announced Friday. Karimov will be buried Saturday in the ancient city of Samarkand,... More »

Airline Says It Has to Weigh You Before You Fly

Uzbekistan Airways brings in 'special weighing machines'

(Newser) - Uzbekistan Airways has introduced what it says are "special weighing machines" at departure gates—and you need to get on one before you fly. In a press release , the Central Asian airline says that under International Air Transport Association regulations, "airlines are obliged to carry out the regular... More »

2 Deaths Overshadow End of Chess Olympiad

Seychelles player dies during game in final round

(Newser) - A major international chess tournament in northern Norway ended on a grim note, with one player dying in the middle of a game and another found dead in a hotel room, organizers said today. A 67-year-old member of the Seychelles team collapsed and died during the final round yesterday of... More »

Uzbek Man Nabbed in Idaho Over Terror Plot

Fazliddin Kurbanov charged with helping foreign terrorist organization

(Newser) - An Uzbek man has been arrested in Idaho and charged with helping a foreign terrorist organization make a bomb. "Any potential threat posed" by Fazliddin Kurbanov has been "contained," federal agents say. He was also charged with possessing bomb parts, the New York Times reports, and he'... More »

US Is Selling Out Uzbekistan

We ignore strategic ally's human rights abuses: Former prisoner

(Newser) - The US media rarely mentions Uzbekistan, but human rights there are in a deplorable state. Just ask Sanjar Umarov, who was jailed and tortured for years for speaking out against the massacre of mostly peaceful protesters in 2005. "I was drugged, beaten, falsely accused of directing the uprising,"... More »

Afghanistan Foils Huge Bomb Plot

Authorities found 10 tons of explosives in banana shipment

(Newser) - Six Afghan men have been arrested while trying to smuggle nearly 10 tons of explosives and five suicide bomb vests into Afghanistan, hidden in a banana shipment from Pakistan, reports al-Jazeera . Afghanistan's intelligence agency says the men were planning on setting off a series of explosions for the country'... More »

Uzbekistan Bans Valentine's Day

Nation cancels concerts, other official events

(Newser) - Lonely hearts rejoice: There's at least one place in the world where you'll feel at home. The central Asian state of Uzbekistan will not observe Valentine's Day this year. Russia's RIA-Novosti news agency reports the unofficial ban on the romantic holiday follows years of irritation with... More »

Dictator's Daughter Lands NYC Fashion Week Show

Human rights activists not happy about it

(Newser) - Gulnara “GooGoosha” Karimova may be the daughter of a hated dictator who once boiled an enemy alive, but that didn’t stop organizers from allowing her to unveil her new fashion line during a show at New York’s upcoming Fashion Week. Karimova, 39, is a high-ranking official in... More »

13 Killed by 6.1 Earthquake in Uzbekistan

Kyrgyzstan-centered earthquake rocked eastern Uzbek city

(Newser) - A powerful earthquake killed 13 people and injured dozens in a heavily populated part of Uzbekistan today, emergency officials said. The magnitude-6.1 temblor centered in neighboring Kyrgyzstan struck shortly after midnight in a mountainous area some 20 miles away from the eastern Uzbek city of Ferghana, which has a... More »

100K Uzbeks Flee Ethnic Massacre in Kyrgyzstan

Hundreds killed as mobs attack minority Uzbeks and burn city of Osh

(Newser) - Some 100,000 minority Uzbeks fleeing a purge by mobs of Kyrgyz were massed at the border today, as the deadliest ethnic violence to hit this Central Asian nation in decades left a major city smoldering. With fires raging in the southern city of Osh for a fourth day, the... More »

Medvedev Orders Kyrgyzstan to Protect Russians

Interim government struggling to restore order after Bakiyev's ouster

(Newser) - Russia warned Kyrgyzstan yesterday that it needs to take steps to protect Russian citizens and property within its borders as turmoil continues. At least five people were killed as mobs of looters and land-grabbers targeted ethnic Russians and Turks in the Central Asian state yesterday, Bloomberg reports. More »

Ireland Agrees to Take in 2 Gitmo Detainees

(Newser) - Ireland has agreed to resettle two Uzbek detainees from the US’ Guantanamo Bay detention center, Ireland’s foreign minister tells the Irish Times. The detainees are among those who are not considered a threat, but can’t be returned to their home countries. Dermot Ahern, a longtime proponent of closing... More »

Kyrgyzstan Issues Eviction Notice to US

Forces have 6 months to leave; Uzbekistan offers new supply route

(Newser) - Kyrgyzstan has issued an eviction notice giving US forces six months to depart an air base key to the transit of troops and supplies to the war in Afghanistan, the AP reports. But in spite of its rocky relationship with the US, nearby Uzbekistan has offered an alternative route for... More »

Power Returns to Kabul, but Bribes Persist

Deal boosts electricity access, business in struggling Afghan capital

(Newser) - For the first time since the fall of the Taliban, the glow of light hangs over Kabul late into the night, GlobalPost reports. An energy deal with Uzbekistan is bringing unprecedented access to electricity to the Afghan capital, where most neighborhoods only had power for about four hours every second... More »

Nations Try to Block Iran's Nuclear Supply

US, Europe think Tehran is nearly out of uranium

(Newser) - Iran is running out of uranium, and Western countries are stepping up diplomatic efforts to keep Tehran from replenishing its supply, the Times of London reports. Iran, which may be out of uranium in months, has so far pursued its nuclear ambitions with a stockpile acquired from South Africa in... More »

US to Expand Routes Into Afghanistan

Safer roads will depend on cooperation of Central Asian nations

(Newser) - More than four-fifths of the supplies for allied troops in Afghanistan travel via Pakistan along a treacherous route, prompting the US to plan new supply lines in the embattled region. The fragility of the current setup was laid bare after a Pakistani counter-militant offensive shut down the Khyber Pass yesterday,... More »

China Off US Rights Blacklist

State Dept. report drops China from top 10 worst abusers despite poor record

(Newser) - The State Department has taken China off its list of the world's 10 worst human rights abusers, the New York Times reports. China's human rights record "remained poor," the department's annual report said, with abuses including "extrajudicial killings, torture, and coerced confessions of prisoners." Officials declined... More »

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