How many Central Asians are fighting for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and do they want to return to wage jihad upon their return home? No one knows for sure, but in recent months Russian officials and pundits have sounded the alarm.
With the Kremlin’s attention fixated on Ukraine, the Caucasus Emirate, a terrorist group fighting to establish an independent Islamic state in the North Caucasus, threatens to undermine Russian domestic security in new ways.
This month, the Turkish government sent to parliament a major judicial reform package that it claims will change once and for all Turkey’s bad-boy image at the European Court of Human Rights. But critics say the initiative will not enable substantive change of Turkey’s controversial anti-terrorism law.
A EurasiaNet.org probe into a late-2011 rail bridge explosion in Uzbekistan has found inconsistencies in the official Uzbek assertion that terrorism was behind the mishap. An eyewitness examination of the blast site, located in a remote part Uzbekistan not far from the Uzbek-Tajik frontier, indicates that the incident likely was not the work of terrorists.
Following two deadly explosions in Kazakhstan, investigators and officials remain tight-lipped over their probes, only insistently ruling out terrorism. Many, however, are finding the hazy explanations hard to swallow, and the press is rife with speculation about the rise of Islamic radicalism.
When authorities in Kyrgyzstan announce that a terrorism suspect has been detained, the public is rarely given a name or convincing background story. So it came as a surprise that the National Security Committee identified a Turkish citizen detained on suspicion of membership in a terrorist organization bent on overthrowing the Turkish Republic.
Amid ongoing protests in Egypt, a US State Department warning about a terrorist threat “against American interests” in Azerbaijan has placed the government in Baku in an awkward situation. Senior members of the governing Yeni Azerbaijan Party have criticized the US action, while law enforcement agencies have questioned the basis for the alert.