You are on page 1of 6

Country News Digest Issue #7

10/13/12-10/19/12

Top Azerbaijani officials have called for a more active U.S. role in the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, stressing Azerbaijans strategic location and resources. They claim that the Armenian lobby is influencing Washington and preventing the United States from fulfilling its position as a co-chair of the Minsk Group.

Azerbaijan

Country News Digest


Russia

Trend.az

Articles:

On Thursday, the Cabinet of Ministers unanimously approved a draft bill to curtail smoking in public and tobacco advertisements in Russia. The bill is supported by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev as part of a plan to counter high mortality rates, and is scheduled to be presented to the Duma on Nov. 1. RIA Novosti

Turkish Weekly

Articles:

Businessweek

Stefan Fule, EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighborhood Policy, visited Georgia this week and met with Prime Minister nominee Bidzina Ivanishvili and other members of the incoming Georgia Dream coalition government. Ivanishvilis group took the opportunity to restate their commitment to integration with the EU and NATO.

Georgia

Ukraine has made a move to ban wheat exports, which is adversely affecting the European market. There are increased fears of a repeat of the wave of export restrictions that exacerbated the food crisis of 2007-08, which triggered riots in countries from Egypt to Senegal. Ukraine will stop exporting wheat on November 15.

Ukraine

Messenger

Articles:

Trend.az

Financial Times

Articles:

Reuters

US Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs Eric Rubin told journalists in Yerevan on Thursday that the continuation of Nagorno-Karabakh peace talks is highly important. He will be highlighting the issue during upcoming meetings. It is widely believed Hungarys extradition of Azerbaijani soldier Ramil Safarov in August has led to the recent deadlock in talks.

Armenia

The International Atomic Energy Agency released the Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review on Belarus, a document that both gave Belarus high marks on reforms it has made in its nuclear power program and made suggestions on how to improve them further. Belarus plans to utilize financial support from Russia to build two new nuclear reactors by the year 2020.

Belarus

News.am

Articles:

ArmInfo

UN News Centre

Articles:

UPI

Turkish officials admitted the Cargo seized on a Syrian flight last week was legal. Originally Turkey claimed the plane was transporting military equipment not allowed on a civilian flight. Officials also stated their problem was not with Russian but Syria. The Russian Foreign Ministry said it will insist on a thorough investigation of allegations of force used against the flights crew.

Turkey

On Thursday Moldova requested a postponement of the implementation deadline for the EUs Third Energy Package from 2016 to 2020. Moldova is chiefly concerned with extending the deadline of Article 9, which requires the separation of gas transportation from gas supplies and distribution.

Moldova

Hurriyet

Articles:

Todays Zaman

BSANNA

Articles:

BASA

Kyrgyz officials have arrested Habibullo Suleymenov who is wanted by Uzbek authorities on terrorism charges. Mr. Suleymenov is believed to be a member of the Islamic Movement of Turkestan, an Islamic militant group. The request for his extradition is now being considered.

Kyrgyzstan

Country News Digest

24 News Agency

Articles:

At a joint news conference with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, President Hamid Karzai said Afghanistan is ready to take full responsibility of security if the US should decide to leave before the 2014 deadline. However, Rasmussen stated the timeline has not changed and that a training force will remain in Afghanistan beyond 2014.

Afghanistan

RFERL

Voice of America

Articles:

Huffington Post

Kazakhstan and its international investment partners are close to starting oil shipments from the large Kashagan oil field. The field, the largest discovered in forty years, has proved difficult to tap into due to its location and extreme weather conditions. Originally due to start operations in 2005, the project was delayed to 2010 and subsequently to early 2013.

Kazakhstan

An International Atomic Engergy Agency (IAEA) diplomat stated it is believed Iran is continuing its uranium enrichment actives and installing more centrifuges at the underground Fordow site - which Tehran only admitted existed in 2009 after Western spy services detected it. IAEA chief Yukiya Amano also stated Wednesday that the agency has continued to see activity at the Parchin military facility.

Iran

ABC News

Articles:

Oil Price

Jerusalem Post

Articles:

Reuters

Kyocera set up the first solar power generators in Tajikistan earlier this week. The solar modules will be used to help power medical facilities in the capital city Dushanbe. Tajikistan maintains an eco-friendly energy grid with only 9 percent coming from coal and the other 91 percent being hydroelectric.

Tajikistan

Representatives of Turkmenistans national energy complex stated on Friday that the country has some 160 promising oil and gas fields. Turkmenistan expects $3.8 billion in investments through partnerships with foreign companies in 2012. This marks a change in policy for the heretofore internally-focused Turkmen government. Turkish Weekly

Turkmenistan

Eco-Business

Articles:

Power

Articles:

Reuters

This year Uzbekistan is employing a new labor force for its large cotton picking operation. After international companies and rights groups complained about the child labor practices in the cotton industry, the government decided to enlist medical staff for work in the field instead. College students and other adults still participate but elementary students remain in school.

Uzbekistan

Rio Tinto rejected Mongolias request to renegotiate a 2009 deal on the $6 billion Oyu Tolgoi copper mine that Rio has plans to start on next year. The Ministry of Mining sent a letter requesting an amendment to the investment agreement.

Mongolia

BBC

Articles:

EurasiaNet

Bloomberg

Articles:

NY Times

Estonia granted asylum to Russian humans rights activist and journalist, Maksim Yefimov. Yefimov had been persecuted for his criticism of the Russian Orthodox church. Yefimov is the head of the Youth Human Rights Group of Karelia.

Country News Digest

Estonia

The Moscow Times

Articles:

The ruling center-right party, Civic Democrats (ODS), of the Czech Republic was soundly defeated in regional elections this week. Experts say that the electorate turned to the Social Democrats (CSSD) due to their frustration with corruption and tough fiscal policy aimed at deficit reduction. Noviny

Czech Republic

RAPSI

Articles:

EU Observer

Voters in Lithuania have thrown out their austerity government, headed by Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius, after they voted on Monday. The center-left party has promised to raise minimum wage, postpone the adoption of the euro, and raise taxes on the wealthy. Kubilius government was praised for its thrift by European leaders.

Lithuania

Anotheranti-Roma extremist right wing march has taken place in Slovakias capital city of Bratislava this week. Although human rights activists attempted to block the march by forming a human chain, police ordered them to allow the protesters through. Reports indicate that the far-right Slovak Brotherhood party was key in organizing the demonstration.

Slovakia

E-Gov Monitor

Articles:

The Moscow Times

Slovak Spectator

Articles:

The Daily

On Thursday EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn stated that it is possible Latvia could become the 18th member of the Eurozone by 2014 if it stays on its current economic path. A review of Latvias eligibility will be conducted next spring. Latvia would be the second Baltic state to join the currency. Its neighbor Estonia joined in 2011.

Latvia

Competing protest marches were held in Miskolc, in eastern Hungary, on Friday. One march, organized by the Roma local government, was held as a warning against segregation and intolerance. The other consisted of supporters of the nationalist Jobbik party. The protests have raised concern for Hungarys minorities among human rights groups.

Hungary

Reuters

Articles:

Chicago Tribune

BBC News

Articles:

Politics.hu

Prime Minister Tusk has proposed a stimulus package worth around $55 billion. The announcement came in the run-up to a vote of no-confidence this Friday. A recent poll showed that his popularity is at an all-time low and that the electorate now favored the right-leaning Law and Justice Party (PiS) over his Civic Platform party (PO)

Poland

The prime ministers of Bulgaria and Romania will meet next Wednesday on the newly completed Danube 2 bridge. Mr. Borisov (Bulgaria) and Mr. Ponta (Romania) will be the first to walk across the bridge which is scheduled to open for full use before the end of the year.

Romania

Reuters

Articles:

Economic Times

Focus

Articles:

Novinite

Anti-organized crime police in Bulgaria broke up a group involved in largescale tax fraud. The group defrauded the government by establishing businesses under assumed identities of lower class individuals. The scheme is estimated to have cost the government 3 million leva (~1.5 million euros).

Country News Digest


Croatia

Bulgaria

On October 17, Secretary Leon Panetta met with his Croatian counterpart, Secretary of Defense Ante Kotromanovic, and the two discussed bilateral cooperation. Panetta also praised Croatias support of ISAF, which stands for International Security Assistance Force. Examiner

Focus

Articles:

Sofia Globe

Articles:

Croatian Times

Albania has decided to repatriate its only postindependence monarch, King Ahmet Zogu, from France. Zogu ruled from 1925 until 1939, and while he started off as president, he later proclaimed constitutional monarchy and declared himself King of the Albanians.

Albania

Parliamentary elections were held in Montenegro this week, with the ruling DPS party garnering a proponderance of the votes (46%) in an election lukewarmly praised by OSCE monitors. The DPS has vowed to continue to pursue European integration for Montenegro.

Montenegro

Washington Post

Articles:

Expatica France

Radio Free Europe

Articles:

Reuters

The Prime Ministers of Kosovo and Serbia will meet with European Union Foreign Policy Advisor Catherine Ashton in an effort to resume negotiations on both sides. The talks are likely to yield a date for a new round of EU-brokered highlevel talks between Serbia and Kosovo led by Baroness Ashton.

Serbia

EUEnlargement CommissionerStefan Fuele released a statement that Kosovo could begin negotiations on a Stabilization and Assistance Agreement, the first step towards formal EU integration, in June 2013, even if it has not completely resolved its issues with Serbia. The official cited the rule of law, trade development, minority rights, and governmental administration as more immediate priorities.

Kosovo

WSJ

Articles:

Business Week

EU Business

Articles:

Novinite

A group of five EU countries is calling for the annulment of Macedonias and Serbias accession into the visa-free travel Schengen zone, after Roma populations from these two countries have begun to abuse the system in large numbers. According to reports, these groups have filed unfounded applications for political asylum, which qualifies them to receive welfare payments from the government as long as the application is being processed.

Macedonia

Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Jana called for a quick decision on the proposed European banking union on Thursday at a twoday EU Summit being held in Brussels. Slovenia has sided with France in the implementation of banking oversight, while Germany contends the plan is too ambitious.

Slovenia

Russia Today

Articles:

Chicago Tribune

Slovenian Times

Articles:

STA

Country News Digest


Former Bosnian Serb Bosnia & Leader Radovan Karadzic Herzegovina opened his defense this week in front of the ICTY in The Hague. Mr. Karadzic claimed that he should be applauded his efforts to minimize violence during the war. Mr. Karadzic is accused of various acts of genocide and crimes against humanity.

Reuters

Articles:

BBC

The Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies is a U.S. Department of Education Title VI-funded National Resource Center (NRC) that strives to increase understanding and appreciation of the cultures and challenges of the region stretching from Central Europe to the Pacific and from the Baltic to the Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas

Box 571031, ICC 111, Washington, DC 20057-1031 Email: ceres@georgetown.edu Tel.: (202) 687-6080 Fax: (202) 687-5829