Uzbekistan plays a pivotal role in Central Asia. It is the region’s most militarily capable and populous country, and large Uzbek minorities live in neighbouring states. As it approaches the tenth anniversary of its independence, however, internal and external pressures threaten to crack the nation’s thin veneer of stability.
Originally published in The Washington Post
Originally published in The New York Times
Originally published in International New York Times
Originally published in Wall Street Journal Europe
Although a political agreement has now been signed, and NATO is poised to enter Macedonia, the possibility of a full-blown civil war, with serious regional consequences, remains high. This briefing paper continues ICG’s analysis of the Macedonian crisis.1 It examines what has happened in the past several weeks, the political agreement signed by the contending parties on 13 August 2001, and what yet needs to be done, in particular by the international community, if that agreement, against still heavy odds, is to bring peace.
The deadlock in the Burundi peace process has finally been broken. On 23 July in Arusha, Nelson Mandela’s choice of Pierre Buyoya and Domitien Ndayizeye as president and vice-president of Burundi for the first phase of transition was endorsed at a summit of regional heads of state.
The past decade in the Western Balkans has seen very few peacefully negotiated transfers of territorial control. The most recent example – albeit one not involving any change of sovereignty - was also the only one achieved by NATO’s direct mediation. In May 2001, the Presevo Valley was brought back under Serbian government control, ending an ethnic Albanian insurgency that had lasted some seventeen months.
Bosnia’s economic reality is still bleak. After more than five years and five billion dollars of Dayton implementation, the country seems only at the beginning of an economic transition that should have begun in 1996.