Uzbekistan

Transnational Organized Crime and Jihadist Terrorism

This book describes and analyzes the convergence of transnational organized crime and jihadist terrorism that has taken place within Russian-speaking social networks in Western Europe. Studies have shown that while under certain circumstances links between criminal organizations and terrorist groups appear, these are usually opportunistic and temporary in nature. Only rarely do they develop into […]

The Threat to Energy Infrastructure in the Central Eurasia from Terrorist Groups Affiliated to ISIL

In 2015, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) announced the establishment of its Khorasan Province, said to encompass “Afghanistan, Pakistan, and other nearby lands.” Soon after, ISIL proclaimed its Caucasus Province. However, the war in Syria and Iraq is going badly for ISIL. Losing ground in its heartland, ISIL fighters will have […]

The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and its Impact on Tajikistan

During the 1992-1997 civil war in Tajikistan, foreign volunteers from primarily Uzbekistan played a prominent role in the fighting on the side of the UTO. Subsequently forming the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), these volunteer jihadists continued fighting and formed a destabilizing factor in Tajikistan’s relationship with neighbouring countries. The IMU in time migrated into […]

UZBEK ISLAMIC EXTREMISTS IN THE CIVIL WARS OF TAJIKISTAN, AFGHANISTAN, AND PAKISTAN: FROM RADICAL ISLAMIC AWAKENING IN THE FERGHANA VALLEY TO TERRORISM WITH ISLAMIC VOCABULARY IN WAZIRISTAN

Michael Fredholm (Stockholm University) analyzes the activities of Uzbek Islamic extremists and finds that, although their Islamic rhetoric has little theological content and is outweighed by their belief in the righteousness of their cause and that salvation can be assured by armed violence in the name of the religious duty of holy war (jihad), they […]

SPECIAL REPORT, CENTRAL ASIAN SECURITY CHALLENGES: 2012 AND BEYOND

Afghanistan plays a pivotal role in Central Asia’s regional instability due to its weak central government, poor economy, and ethnically diverse population. Although Afghanistan contains important natural resources, the country still faces a number of problems, each of which has the potential to destroy the Afghan government after the pull-out of international military forces. Central […]

ПУСТЫЕ ДУШИ – ЗИЯНИЕ, КОТОРОЕ ДОЛЖНО БЫТЬ ЗАПОЛНЕНО

Современный джихадист часто живет на Западе, возможно вторым поколением эмигрантов или как обращенный, или в другой светской общине где-нибудь в постсоветской Средней Азии. Чаще всего он не знаком с арабским и не является мусульманином. Для него религия и идеология – скорее оправдание задним числом легитимности агрессивных действий и эффект джихадизма, а не его причина. Для […]

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization and Eurasian Geopolitics

First study to properly treat a key regional grouping in Asia. Explores both security and energy issues across the region. Considers geopolitical obstacles to the SCO’s long-term viability. The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has developed into a key regional security group in Asia, its member states representing no less than “half of humanity”. Alarmists believe […]

FROM THE FERGHANA VALLEY TO WAZIRISTAN AND BEYOND: THE ROLE OF UZBEK ISLAMIC EXTREMISTS IN THE CIVIL WARS OF TAJIKISTAN, AFGHANISTAN, AND PAKISTAN

Uzbek proponents of Islamic extremism have played an important role as foreign participants in the civil wars of Tajikistan and Afghanistan and the present conflict between Pakistani Taliban and security forces in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Their close links to international jihadist networks such as the Al-Qaida and, at times, considerable income from sources […]

THE WORLD OF CENTRAL ASIAN OIL AND GAS: POWER POLITICS, MARKET FORCES, AND STEALTH PIPELINES

1. Central Asia is beginning to see a genuine move away from barter deals towards commercial deals in accordance with market forces. 2. Contrary to much perceived wisdom, in Central Asia it is Gazprom, Russia’s natural gas export monopoly, that is leading the way in the movement towards market forces. 3. Central Asian natural gas […]

ISLAM AND MODERNITY IN CONTEMPORARY CENTRAL ASIA – RELIGIOUS FAITH VERSUS WAY OF LIFE: A STORY OF FOUR RADICAL DISRUPTIONS

What Makes Central Asian Islam Central Asian? In March 2005, an Afghan deputy minister of the interior (who out of mercy will remain unnamed) was touring Europe. At one stop, he suddenly found himself faced with a question that obviously took him by surprise. How long, an innocent but assuredly well-meaning European asked, had Afghanistan […]

ISLAMIC EXTREMISM AS A POLITICAL FORCE: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF CENTRAL ASIAN ISLAMIC EXTREMIST MOVEMENTS

Islam in Central Asia does not constitute a uniform religious, social, or political force. While all titular Central Asian ethnic groups, i.e., the nations that states were named after, eventually embraced Islam, the religion did not penetrate the traditional cultures and social systems of these groups to an equal extent. While the sedentary groups generally […]

REVOLT AND REPRESSION IN UZBEKISTAN: THE DILEMMA OF WESTERN RESPONSE

The forceful suppression of revolt in Andijan shocked but also alarmed most international observers and seasoned politicians: the loss of hundreds of innocent lives was appalling but the involvement of Islamist networks was worrisome indeed. Moscow, in contrast, expressed unambiguous support to the ‘friendly Uzbek government’ and added more criticism to Western NGOs that were […]

THE PROSPECTS FOR INTERNAL UNREST IN TURKMENISTAN

Stalin’s Disneyland? The widely publicised attempt on Turkmenistani President Saparmurat Niyazov’s life on 25 November 2002, and the subsequent arrest in the capital Ashgabat of an exiled, leading opponent to the Niyazov regime, dispelled the notion that any rumours of attempted palace coups against the Turkmenistani government were exaggerated. Although the facts of the affair […]

ISLAMIC EXTREMISM AS A POLITICAL FORCE IN CENTRAL ASIA

Islam in Central Asia does not constitute a uniform religious, social, or political force. While all titular Central Asian ethnic groups, i.e., the nations that states were named after, eventually embraced Islam, the religion did not penetrate the traditional cultures and social systems of these groups to an equally encompassing extent. While sedentary groups generally […]

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