Igor Rotar

Igor Rotar is an expert on security, ethnic and religious trends in the North Caucasus and Central Asia. He has previously written for Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Komsomol’skaia Pravda, Izvestia, Rossia, Novie Izvestia, as well as the Forum 18 News Service.

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Articles by Igor Rotar

Is Kharkiv Province Another Enclave of Separatists?

On March 6, the car of the commander of the Ukrainian special police battalion “Slobozhanshchyna,” Andriy Yanholenko, exploded in the government-controlled eastern city of Kharkiv. The commander and his spouse

Can Ashgabat Reconcile Kabul With the Taliban?

The government of Turkmenistan has begun mobilizing the country’s army reservists and has sent them to the border with Afghanistan. At least a few dozen reservists were deployed to the

Russia Offers Generous Support for the Kyrgyz Army

According to the newspaper Kommersant, Russia agreed to provide military and technical support to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan in the form of direct assistance. Russia is prepared to spend $1.1 billion

CHARGES FILED AGAINST TAJIK OPPOSITION FIGURE

On September 22 the Prosecutor General’s Office of Tajikistan launched a criminal case at the request of the Ministry of Internal Affairs against Dodojon Atovulloev, the founder of the newspaper

ANDIJAN SHOW TRIAL VERDICT CONDEMNED BY WEST

The first criminal trial related to the May uprising in Andijan, Uzbekistan, ended in Tashkent on November 14. The Supreme Court of Uzbekistan sentenced the 15 defendants to prison terms

YULDASHEV TESTIMONY PLAYED AT ANDIJAN TRIAL

As the trial of Akramiya members entered its fifth week in Tashkent, the court heard testimony from Akram Yuldashev, the "spiritual force" allegedly behind the May uprising in Andijan. The

TASHKENT INSISTS ANDIJAN HAD KYRGYZ LINK

Law-enforcement agencies from Osh district in southern Kyrgyzstan are continuing to investigate the possible involvement of Kyrgyz citizens in the May 10 armed uprising in Andijan, an Uzbek city near

OPPOSITION TRIAL BEGINS IN TAJIKISTAN

On July 7 Eribek Ibraghimov, a former Tajik opposition field commander, went on trial before Tajikistan's Supreme Court. Better known by his nickname "Sheikh," Ibraghimov stands trial with four other

ETHNIC CONFLICT SIMMERS IN SOUTHERN KYRGYZSTAN

Dzirgalbek Sourabaldiyev, a well-known businessman and a member of Kyrgyzstan's parliament, was assassinated in downtown Bishkek on June 10. The deputy was shot five or six times, and his driver

What Lies Ahead For Tajikistan?

Tajikistan differs from the other countries of Central Asia for several reasons. Tajiks are the only relatively large group of Persian-speaking people in Central Asia. The titular nationalities of the

Terrorism in Uzbekistan: A Self-Made Crisis

However paradoxical it may sound, the recent terrorist acts in Uzbekistan were not a complete surprise, either to average citizens in the republic or to political analysts. The horrific economic

KARIMOV ORDERS BLOODY END TO ANDIJAN UPRISING

Troops dispatched by Tashkent have put down last week's popular uprising in Andijan, Uzbekistan. Undeterred by the thousands of demonstrators, troops opened fire on the crowd, shooting women and children

Why Extremism is on the Rise In Uzbekistan

The July 30 attacks on the Prosecutor General's Office, the U.S. Embassy, and the Israeli Embassy in Tashkent demonstrate the continued terrorist presence in the republic of Uzbekistan. These forces

Hizb ut-Tahrir Today

An Interview with Sadykzhan Kamuluddin by Igor Rotar Sadykzhan Kamuluddin (Kamalov), president of the Islamic Center of the Republic of Kyrgyzstan and former Mufti and member of the Kyrgyzstans Supreme

Hizb ut-Tahrir in Central Asia

Without doubt, Hizb ut-Tahrir (Liberation Party) is one of the most powerful organizations operating in Central Asia. Hizb ut-Tahrir (HuT) is banned in nearly all Central Asian republics, but despite

PROTESTS RISE FOLLOWING DISPUTED KYRGYZ VOTE

Kyrgyzstan held parliamentary elections on Sunday, February 27. Some 388 candidates vied for 75 parliamentary seats. According to preliminary data collected by the Central Electoral Commission, candidates secured a first-round

MERCHANTS PROTEST NEW BANKING LAWS IN UZBEKISTAN

Mass riots have rocked the city of Khokand located in Uzbekistan's Fergana Valley. The riots started after a government decree on toughening trade regulations, which was issued in August, went

Why Extremism Is On The Rise In Uzbekistan

The July 30 attacks on the Prosecutor General's Office, the U.S. Embassy, and the Israeli Embassy in Tashkent demonstrate the continued terrorist presence in the republic of Uzbekistan. These forces

Terrorism In Uzbekistan: A Self-made Crisis

However paradoxical it may sound, the recent terrorist acts in Uzbekistan were not a complete surprise, either to average citizens in the republic or to political analysts. The horrific economic

The Growing Problem Of Uighur Separatism

'Chinese Chechnya' is how - only half-jokingly - Central Asians refer to the Xinjiang-Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) of China (historically known as Eastern Turkistan). Such a comparison is not without

Hizb Ut-tahrir Today

An Interview with Sadykzhan Kamuluddin by Igor Rotar Sadykzhan Kamuluddin (Kamalov), president of the Islamic Center of the Republic of Kyrgyzstan and former Mufti and member of the Kyrgyzstans Supreme

What Lies Ahead For Tajikistan?

Tajikistan differs from the other countries of Central Asia for several reasons. Tajiks are the only relatively large group of Persian-speaking people in Central Asia. The titular nationalities of the

Hizb Ut-tahrir In Central Asia

Without doubt, Hizb ut-Tahrir (Liberation Party) is one of the most powerful organizations operating in Central Asia. Hizb ut-Tahrir (HuT) is banned in nearly all Central Asian republics, but despite

MYTHS AND PREJUDICE ACROSS THE FSU

By Igor Rotar An interesting paradox has emerged across a number of the former Soviet republics: an unexpected anti-Semitism in people who have often never even met any Jews. And

THE DYING ARAL SEA

By Igor Rotar The drying Aral Sea is one of the worst ecological disasters of the twentieth century. Located in the west of Central Asia, with part of it belonging

INTERVIEW WITH GRIGORYANTS

By Igor Rotar Russia still presents a threat to the international community, says Sergei Grigoryants, chairman of the human rights foundation Glasnost. Sergei Ivanovich Grigoryants is one of Russia's best-known

MINGRELIA: GEORGIA’S NEW “HOT SPOT”?

By Igor Rotar In April, the situation in Mingrelia (the Black Sea region of western Georgia that borders Abkhazia) heated up again. It all began when Georgian special operations troops