Sunday 28 March 2004
March 24, 2004
Central Asia: 'World TB Day' Observed Amid Concerns Of Epidemic
World Tuberculosis Day is raising attention about one of the most deadly infectious diseases in the world. In the next 20 years, an estimated 1 billion people will be infected with TB, and some 36 million will die of the disease.
March 23, 2004
Uzbekistan: Azerbaijani President Receiving Warm Welcome
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev arrived today in Uzbekistan for a two-day state visit. He is meeting with President Islam Karimov and other top Uzbek officials and participating in many ceremonies, including the inauguration of an Azerbaijani cultural center. What explains Aliyev's warm welcome in Uzbekistan?
March 18, 2004
Central Asia: EU Commissioner Wraps Up Regional Visit
EU External Relations Commissioner Chris Patten ends tomorrow his five-day tour to Central Asia after meeting the presidents of Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan. During the visit, the first to the region by a European commissioner since 1996, Patten stressed that a sustainable and fruitful relationship requires tangible steps in the four republics to consolidate civil rights and the rule of law.
March 16, 2004
Western Press Review: Uzbek-U.S. Relations, Adjaria's Independence Bid, And The Spanish Vote -- A Terrorist Victory Or Democracy At Work?
Prague, 16 March 2004 (RFE/RL) -- Several major dailies today tackle the question of whether the decision of Spanish voters to oust the ruling Popular Party in a 14 March vote was a direct result of last week's attacks on commuter trains in Madrid. The bombings are suspected by some of being the work of Al-Qaeda, acting in retribution for Spain's support for the U.S.-led war in Iraq. Several observers question whether the vote represents a victory for terrorism in demonstrating that a well-timed attack can topple a ruling party that otherwise seemed headed for election victory. Others maintain the poll is a testament to Spanish democracy, as voters made a clear distinction at the polls between their government's role in the campaign against terrorism, which they support, and a war in Iraq that 90 percent of the electorate opposed. Other issues looked at today include Washington's relations with Uzbekistan and strides toward independence for Georgia's restive republic of Adjaria.
March 16, 2004
UN: WHO Says Drug-Resistant TB Threatens World
The World Health Organization (WHO) says drug-resistant tuberculosis (TB) is raging in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The WHO says in a report issued today that drug resistance in new TB patients runs as high as 14 percent in parts of some countries. One expert told RFE/RL that six out of the world's 10 hot spots for multidrug-resistant TB are in Russia, the Baltic states, and Central Asia.
March 15, 2004
Central Asia: EU Commissioner Begins Rare Tour Of Region
Chris Patten, the European Union's external relations commissioner, today embarks on a rare tour of Central Asia. The visit will take in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan -- bypassing Turkmenistan, which the EU views as undeserving of closer ties. EU officials say Patten will bring a "balanced message," urging greater political and economic reforms, while also recognizing the growing importance of the region in EU foreign policy thinking.
March 12, 2004
UN: Human Rights Commission Facing Calls for Reform (Part 1)
The UN Human Rights Commission, the world's most important rights forum, starts its 60th session next week amid mounting calls for reform. Rights monitors expect the commission to continue a pattern of shielding some of the worst rights-abusing governments from criticism. But there is also hope that a newly formed group of democracies will begin to assert itself and press for more responsible behavior by the commission.
March 05, 2004
Uzbekistan: Ozoda Eshmuradova -- 'Selling Her Hands' And Waiting For A Better Future (Part 1)
Mardikors gather at markets in the early morning in hopes of finding work In December 1977, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 8 March as a commemorative day honoring women's rights and international peace. The tradition of marking a special woman's day stretches back nearly a century, and continues to unite women across the world regardless of ethnic and political boundaries. In this four-part series, RFE/RL profiles four extraordinary women in Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan.
February 26, 2004
Uzbekistan: Rumsfeld Says Human Rights Only One Aspect Of Relations
Visiting Uzbekistan this week, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said the Central Asian nation's human rights record is just one aspect of many in Washington's relations with Tashkent. Rumsfeld gave no indication that bilateral ties have been weakened by continuing reports of rights violations in Uzbekistan.
February 26, 2004
Central Asia: Rumsfeld Wraps Up Visit To Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan
U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld paid a visit to Central Asia this week aimed at strengthening military ties and assessing future security needs. RFE/RL looks at the visit and what it accomplished in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.
February 26, 2004
World: U.S. State Department Issues Critical Report On Global Human Rights
The U.S. State Department has released its annual report on human rights around the world. Secretary of State Colin Powell called the report a vital instrument not just for informing the public but for guiding U.S. foreign policy. From Washington, RFE/RL correspondents Jeffrey Donovan and Frank T. Csongos report.