By Anar Valiyev (9/11/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: On June 21, the Constitutional Court of Azerbaijan approved the draft bill of a referendum on the introduction of 39 changes and amendments to the Constitution, submitted by President Aliyev. The most important changes over which the referendum is believed to have been organized were the cancellation of the proportional electoral system which implied that deputies are to be elected only on the basis of single-member constituencies; the number of votes required for the election of President was reduced to simple majority whereas before two thirds of votes were required; transferring the execution of the duties of Head of State in case of the President's premature resignation to the prime minister instead of the parliamentary speaker; and to transfer authority to ban political parties from the Constitutional Court to public courts. "Time has passed.
By Alisher Khamidov (9/11/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Several deputies of the Kyrgyz parliament, with civil society and human rights activists, on 14 August initiated a new movement called "For the Resignation of Askar Akayev and Reforms for the People" in Bishkek. Among its initiators are prominent public figures Azimbek Beknazarov, Adahan Madumarov, president of the Human Rights Institute Topchubek Turgunaliev, Chairman of the Kyrgyz Committee for Human Rights Ramazan Dyryldaev. The group has designated Ismail Isakov, a former Kyrgyz general, as its chairman and set a goal of preparing measures to end the current crisis and a program of reforms in Kyrgyzstan by September.
By Stephen Blank (9/11/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: These economic and strategic initiatives clearly are shaped by strategic concepts that the Indian government is now implementing. In this regard, India has rediscovered its prior history, including that of the British Raj, which articulated very clear strategic concepts regarding Central Asia. Historically the Raj kept a close watch for threats emanating from Central Asia and Afghanistan that could threaten British sovereignty in India and the country's integrity, among them Islamic insurgency.
By Mamuka Tsereteli (9/11/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: In late August the Georgian Government had a series of negotiations with Itera International Energy LLC on privatization of the Tbilisi natural gas distribution company Tbilgazi. Those negotiations were conducted on the backdrop of the fact that Georgian state owned entities owe to Itera $90 million for the natural gas delivered to Tbilisi and the Chemical plant in Rustavi in recent years (the official Georgian number mentioned in relation to this deal is $32 million). As a result of negotiations, the Georgian government signed a memorandum of understanding, which envisages creation of a joint venture between the Georgian government and Itera, with the latter having 51 percent and control over the management of the company.
The Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst is a biweekly publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program, a Joint Transatlantic Research and Policy Center affiliated with the American Foreign Policy Council, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst has brought cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.