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Top Uzbek officials 'need permission' for foreign trips

Uzbekistan's President Islam Karimov has issued a decree obliging top state officials to have special approval for their foreign trips in order to safeguard state secrets, according to the document published in media on Monday. According to the decree, issued last week but only published now, the list of the state officials range from Prime Minister Shavkat Mirziyayev down to town hokims (governors) of the ex-Soviet country.

Rights groups slam planned Prague visit by Uzbek leader

Thirty human rights groups Tuesday called on Czech President Milos Zeman to reconsider his plan to host his Uzbek counterpart Islam Karimov, accused of serious rights abuses, on a state visit next week. The groups including Human Rights Watch and the Prague-based People in Need released an open letter to Zeman expressing their "surprise and deep concern" over the invitation. They called on Zeman to reconsider the invitation or to at least raise the human rights situation in the energy-rich central Asian state with Karimov during the visit.

Xinhua world news summary at 0100 GMT, Nov. 29

TASHKENT -- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said on Thursday that his country is ready to explore new cooperation fields with Uzbekistan and push bilateral relations to a new high. Li made the remarks during a meeting with Uzbek President Islam Karimov. "Uzbekistan is a reliable, good friend and partner for China in Central Asia," Li said. (Uzbekistan-Li-Meeting) - - - - BAGHDAD -- At least 23 people were killed and 43 others wounded in violent attacks across Iraq on Thursday, the interior ministry and police sources said.

Youngest daughter takes distance from Uzbek president

The youngest daughter of Uzbekistan's president Islam Karimov has distanced herself from the policies of her father, who has ruled the ex-Soviet Central Asian state for more than two decades. Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva, 35, Uzbekistan's permanent representative at UNESCO in Paris, in an interview to the BBC Uzbek Service also said that she has not been in contact with her ambitious older sister, Gulnara, who is seen as a possible presidential successor, for 12 years.

Uzbekistan minister touts booming economy

The ex-Soviet republic of Uzbekistan has been posting over eight percent of economic growth over the past seven years and attracted $120 billion of investments since it became independent in 1991, an Uzbek minister said Thursday. "More than 50 percent of it is direct foreign investment, which has an annual growth of around 20-25 percent, said Elyor Ganiev, Minister of Foreign Economic Relations, Investments and Trade.

'Important partner' Uzbekistan needs civil society progress

Uzbekistan, a key transit state for coalition forces in Afghanistan, will remain an important partner of the United States even after the troop withdrawal in 2014, but needs to make space for civil society, a visiting US official said Thursday. "I had an opportunity to tell our friends in Uzbek government that our relations are much more than about the good progress we have in Afghanistan," Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian affairs Robert Blake told reporters in Tashkent.

Uzbek strongman warns Putin on rare Kremlin visit

Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov on Monday warned Russian President Vladimir Putin over the growing dangers of extremism in Central Asia, his first trip abroad since claims from the exiled opposition sparked rumours about the Uzbek strongman's health. The talks marked a rare visit to the Kremlin for Uzbekistan's first and only post-Soviet leader, whose country has fallen into increasing isolation, not only with strained relations with the West but also testy ties with former Soviet master Moscow.

Uzbek strongman warns Putin on rare Kremlin visit

Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov on Monday warned Russian President Vladimir Putin over the growing dangers of extremism in Central Asia, his first trip abroad since claims from the exiled opposition sparked rumours about the Uzbek strongman's health. The talks marked a rare visit to the Kremlin for Uzbekistan's first and only post-Soviet leader, whose country has fallen into increasing isolation not only with strained relations with the West but also testy ties with former Soviet master Moscow.

President Karimov to pay official visit to Russia

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov will make an official visit to Russia where several documents will be signed, reported the president's press service.The visit will take place on April 14-15 at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin.The Presidents will discuss further development of bilateral cooperation and will exchange views concerning regional and international issues.The economic cooperation program for 2013-2017, agreement on encouragement and reciprocal protection of investments and other documents will be signed during this visit.Central Asian N

The Economist: Two of Central Asia’s strongmen and their daughters ponder succession

Karimova Relations between Islam Karimov, president of Uzbekistan, and his counterpart in Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbaev, have long been soured by their tussle for regional primacy in Central Asia. But the two ageing autocrats can be pragmatic. So on March 27th Mr Karimov granted an audience to Mr Nazarbayev’s foreign minister, Erlan Idrissov, in his residence in the capital Tashkent. The two ageing leaders seem to want to give each other a helping hand.Intimations of mortalityThe Economist6 April 2013Television footage of the meeting was closely studied.
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