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CERES News Digest: Issue #6

CERES News Digest: Issue #6

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CERES News Digest is a news overview of the 33 countries that are covered by the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies Center at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service
CERES News Digest is a news overview of the 33 countries that are covered by the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies Center at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service

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07/20/2014

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Country News Digest Issue #6
10/09/12-10/12/12
 
Country News Digest 
President Aliev criticizedBP’s perormance in oilextraction in Azerbaijan
 AzerbaijanGeorgia Russia
this week, threatening to expel the company i necessary.BP is the current leader and majority shareholder o theconsortium ormed by the “contract o the century” ten years ago, but the Azerbaijani government has accused ito ailing to ulll its side o the bargain.
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On Wednesday, theKremlin announced that itdoes not intend to renew the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Treat Reduction Program with the U.S., an agreement credited with removing anddismantling thousands o nuclear weapons in the ormerSoviet Union. Russia says it now has the nances requiredto maintain its own stockpiles without American aid.
 Armenia Moldova BelarusUkraineTurkey
 ymoshenko is againreusing to appear at her taxevasion trial, and the heado the OSCE election observation mission was denied ameeting with her. Te OSCE will have over 600 observersmonitoring the upcoming elections. Te International AtomicEnergy Agency releasedthe Integrated NuclearInrastructure Review on Belarus, a document that bothgave Belarus high marks on reorms it has made in itsnuclear power program and made suggestions on how toimprove them urther. Belarus plans to utilize nancialsupport rom Russia to build two new nuclear reactors by the year 2020. Te US and Moldovasigned three bilateralagreements this week,providing an additional $11.5 million in assistence orthe development o the Moldovan economy and publicservices, and to strengthen judicial institutions andthe rule o law. Te signing ceremony took place at aphyto-sanitary laboratory that was ully renovated withUS assistance, helping Moldova meet international oodsaety standards.President Mikheil Saa-kashvili accepted hisgovernment’s resignationthis week ater his United National Movement lost toopposition leader Bidzina Ivanishvili’s Georgia DreamCoalition in the Oct. 1 parliamentary elections. Tecurrent cabinet will maintain its duties until the new cabinet, already nominated by Ivanishvili, is ormed.Former oreign ministerVartan Oskanian wasormally charged onMonday by Armenia’s National Security Service withone count o money laundering and one count o misappropriation o unds. I convicted Oskanian may ace nes and up to 12 years in prison. Te US Ambassadorto Armenia, John Heern, released a statement sayingthis development was “bad or justice and democracy inArmenia”.NAO secretary generalAnders Fogh Rasmussenannounced that NAO has“all necessary plans in place to protect and deend urkey i necessary.” urkey’s Chie o General Sta, Gen. NecdetÖzel, has also signaled urkey’s willingness to respondmore harshly i mortars continue to all on urkey romSyria. On Wednesday urkey orced a Syrian passengerplane in route rom Moscow to Damascus to land inAnkara on suspicions o transporting military equipment.ABC.az 
 
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Country News Digest 
Kyrgyzstan and Russiasigned an agreement onreadmission this week. Te
 Kyrgyzstan
 Kazakhstan
agreement places mutual obligations on the two ormerSoviet states to prevent illegal migration. As part o theagreement Russia has agreed to pay all transportationcosts o deportation. Te International CrisisGroup released a reportMonday arguing thatAghanistan is not ready to take over security operationsater the 2014 withdrawal o US and NAO orces. TeICG also asserts it is a “near certaintythe 2014 elections will be plagued with raud, likely resulting in high levelso violence across the country.
 Mongolia Iran
In his rst public responseto the plunge o the Iranianrial and the resultingprotests last week, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei warnedgovernment ocials to curb the inghting over economictroubles and accused the West o blowing the protestsout o proportion. Te rial has lost 40% o its value thismonth and is down 80% against the dollar this year. urkmenistan’s cottonharvest is underway.More than 60% o the1.1 million-ton harvest has already been collected. urkmenistan plans to host an international cotton airin late November which would promote urkmen cottonand encourage oreign investment in the industry.Ulan-Bator is set to removea once prominent, but now decaying bronze statue o Lenin. Many other statues o Lenin were built and thentorn down or scrap metal, but the statue in the capitollasted so long because older Mongols still revere Lenin.Vladimir Kozlov, leader o the Alga opposition party, was sentenced to yearsin jail or seeking to overthrow the government. Te caserelates to the Zhanaozen uprising last December. Mr.Kozlov, an outspoken critic o President Nazarbayev,claims that the trial was meant to stife the opposition.Russia has agreed to exemptrom duties and taxes onemillion tons o petroleumproducts shipped to ajikistan per year. Russia’s portiono the ajik market has allen rom 95% two years agoto 62% today. Te ajik government predicts that theduty exemption could result in diesel and gasoline pricereductions o up to 40%. Te U.S. and Uzbekistanhave agreed to cooperatein eorts to disrupt drugtrade in the Central Asian state. Te U.S. DEA will work with the Uzbek Interior Ministry. Te drug tradethrough Uzbekistan originates in Aghanistan and eithergoes directly over the border or through ajikistan. Drugseizures in the country rose last year to 5,404 kg o drugs, up rom 4,716 kg the year beore.
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