Kyrgyzstan's president, Almazbek Atambayev, at a Commonwealth of Independent States summit, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, Sept. 16, 2016 (Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP).

Kyrgyzstan will hold a referendum on Dec. 11 on proposed reforms to its constitution that would give more power to the prime minister. Opponents of the reforms fear they are a way for President Almazbek Atambayev to maintain his grip on power and crack down on human rights. In an email interview, Medet Tiulegenov, an assistant professor at the American University of Central Asia, discusses Kyrgyzstan’s constitutional referendum. WPR: What changes would the Dec. 11 referendum make to Kyrgyzstan’s constitution, and what are President Almazbek Atambayev’s political objectives in seeking them? Medet Tiulegenov: The proposed changes largely concern issues of […]

Uzbek men gather to pay their last respects during the funeral of President Islam Karimov, Samarkand, Uzbekistan, Sept. 3, 2016 (AP photo).

In this week’s Trend Lines podcast, WPR’s editor-in-chief, Judah Grunstein, and senior editor, Frederick Deknatel, discuss the African exodus from the International Criminal Court, Japan’s relationship with the Philippines, and the U.S. presidential election. For the Report, Sarah Kendzior joins Peter Dörrie to talk about Uzbekistan after the death of President Islam Karimov. Listen:Download: MP3Subscribe: iTunes | RSS Relevant Articles on WPR: An African Exodus From the ICC Shows How the Court Sealed Its Own Fate Can Japan Play the Mediator Amid Strained U.S.-Philippine Ties? The Populist Revolt That Propelled Trump Won’t Fade Away If He Loses The Death of […]

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On Aug. 26, Uzbekistan’s state media abruptly announced that President Islam Karimov had passed a new resolution: This year, in addition to the annual Independence Day festivities on Sept. 1, the following day, Sept. 2, would also be a national holiday. According to the Uzbek media, the extra day off was necessary “for the creation of favorable conditions for the rest of the population, and the rational use of working time.” It is unlikely that Karimov actually signed off on this resolution, though. By Aug. 26, Uzbekistan’s first and only president was brain-dead, having had a massive stoke, as confirmed […]