No U.S. President Has Ever Visited Central Asia. Biden Can Change That

U.S. and Kazakh national flags at the scene of a news conference with then-U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Kazakh Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tleuberdi, in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan (Sputnik photo by Vladislav Vodnev via AP Images).
U.S. and Kazakh national flags at the scene of a news conference with then-U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Kazakh Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tleuberdi, in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan (Sputnik photo by Vladislav Vodnev via AP Images).

As President Joe Biden’s foreign policy takes shape, one issue that still needs clarification is the role of Central Asia. Discussions in Washington about the region usually occur not on its own terms, but in the context of broader issues about Russian and Chinese influence, or security concerns around terrorism and the war in Afghanistan. However, Central Asia is important to the U.S. in its own right. For one thing, it is composed of frontier markets that can be attractive to U.S. companies, apart from the energy firms that already operate there. And some governments share the Biden administration’s interest […]

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