Events Calendar

May
8
Wed
2019
What Next? Improving Counter-Extremism Programs in Central Asia @ Elliott School of International Affairs, Room 505
May 8 @ 10:00 AM – 11:15 AM
What Next? Improving Counter-Extremism Programs in Central Asia @ Elliott School of International Affairs, Room 505
While the Islamic State lost its physical territories in Syria and Iraq, the grievances that drove thousands of Central Asians into its ranks remain. Since 2014, a range of international actors, including the United States, the European Union, and the United Nations, spent millions of dollars on counter-extremism projects in Central Asia. Yet, problems remain in the way actors approach extremism conceptually and in program implementation. International donors’ increased interest in counter-extremism pushes local NGOs to frame an array of unrelated issues as tied to radicalization and violent extremism. Meanwhile, regional governments blur the distinctions between societal Islamization and political radicalization, grouping political activists, non-violent extremists and violent extremists together in one category. This creates challenges for development actors looking to operate in the region with the permission of local governments.
To help address these issues, the Program on Extremism and Central Asia Program at GWU will convene a roundtable on May 8, 2019 featuring three experts on extremism in Central Asia. During the discussion, panelists will discuss several questions about counter-extremism programming in Central Asia:
  • How can international actors develop programs to address these issues?
  • How can we define divergent forms of extremism in ways that allow us to address issues of intolerance and societal violence?
  • Where do we draw the line between violent and non-violent extremism?
  • How can the donor community work with civil society to ensure that the issues being addressed derive from local concerns rather than the interests of international donors?
Moderator
Bennett Clifford, Research Fellow, Program on Extremism
Panelists
Dr. Marlene Laruelle, Director, Central Asia Program; Associate Director, Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, Elliott School of International Affairs
Dr. Edward Lemon,  DMGS-Kennan Institute Fellow, Daniel Morgan Graduate School; Global Fellow, Wilson Center
Noah Tucker, Senior Editor for the Uzbek Service (Ozodlik), Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

To register for the event, please click here.

May
9
Thu
2019
The Rise of Social Media in Central Asia – Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Seminar Series @ Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 1779 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036
May 9 @ 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
The Rise of Social Media in Central Asia - Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Seminar Series @ Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 1779 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036
The influence of social media in Central Asia has expanded rapidly in recent years. While restrictions on media continue to plague the region, the influence of social media on the population, especially young people, is growing. Crucial debates on the values society should accept, the rise of native language journalism and social activism are all now happening online. The latest analysis of the power that social media has in a variety of forms will be presented from experts from the field. Join us for a presentation and open discussion to learn more about how social media will influence the future of Central Asia.
Mirakmal Niyazmatov is an immigration and human rights attorney. He holds LL.M and J.S.D. degrees from Notre Dame Law School. In 2013, Mirakmal helped to co-found Tashabbus Inc., a Washington, DC-based NGO dedicated to strengthening the rule of law in Uzbekistan. He is currently serving as its President.
Eldar Asanov is a linguist and journalist whose research at GW is dedicated to the problems of mass media, censorship and public debate in Uzbekistan. He extensive experience working in Uzbek media in digital and print journalism as well as in television. He is also a founder of the popular scientific blog “Asanov Format”. He was an editor and project manager at the “Daryo.uz” news portal and participates in the Internews Network and EU joint grant on opposing violent extremism in Central Asia. He earned a BA in Mass Media and an MA in Public Relations from National University of Uzbekistan and a PhD in Applied Linguistics at Tashkent State University.
Elmurat Ashiraliev researches the mediascape in Kyrgyz Republic as a visiting fellow at The George Washington University. He is a journalist at Kloop Media, an independent Kyrgyz media outlet, which covers topics including politics, human rights, and corruption. As a part of the Kloop Media team, Elmurat served as the Kyrgyz editor for the UNDEF and UNESCO supported “Community Media Centers” projects. He is a member of the “Esimde” team which researches history and memory of the Kyrgyz Republic. Elmurat earned an MA in Central Asian Studies from American University of Central Asia in 2016.

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May
28
Tue
2019
Improving Human Capital and Social Innovation in a post-Karimov Uzbekistan. Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Seminar Series @ Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
May 28 @ 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Improving Human Capital and Social Innovation in a post-Karimov Uzbekistan. Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Seminar Series @ Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

As Uzbekistan continues to undergo reforms under Shavkat Mirziyoyev, the improvement of human capital is an essential part of the country’s growth. The country faces numerous challenges regarding its minority populations and returning migrants, as well as the government’s ability to encourage and harness social innovation. Civil society organizations are still limited in their ability to operate, which presents additional barriers to developing this field. However, the reforms that the Mirziyoyev administration are implementing p  expertise in the field and an active discussion about the future of social innovation and human capital in Uzbekistan.

With Sherzod Eraliev, Bakhrom Radjabov, and Kamilla Zakirova

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May
29
Wed
2019
Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Final Seminar Series @ Room 505
May 29 @ 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
Spring 2019 CAP Fellows Final Seminar Series @ Room 505

Panel I

11:00 am to 12:30 pm

Education challenges and opportunities in Kazakhstan and
Uzbekistan

Education constitutes one of the most pressing social issues for Central Asian societies. In Kazakhstan, regional developmental inequalities deeply impact educational capabilities for students. However, those who have studied in the West are now able to play a key role in active civic engagement. In Uzbekistan, Mirziyoyev’s reforms have opened opportunities for the development of foreign-university branch-campuses, as well as for private schools; yet with limitations and challenges. Join us for a discussion on how more inclusive education should and will reform the future of Central Asia.

With Aigerim Kopeyeva, Sergey Marinin, Dilnoza Ubaydullaeva, and Firdavs Navruzov

Lunch Served

12:30-1:15 pm

Panel II

1:15 to 2:45 pm

The Multifaceted Revival of Islam: from Ziyarah Tourism to Gender Challenges

Recent developments in Uzbekistan bring new light to the role that Islam and gender play in the country. Islam, and how it is practiced, permeate a variety of economic sectors such as pilgrimage tourism and female entrepreneurship, showing potential for economic growth. At the same time, debates on women’s veiling and the status of women are shaped deeply by societal trends toward re-traditionalization. Join us for a discussion on how these issues are closely tied in contemporary Uzbekistan.

with Donohon Abdugafurova, Nozimakhon Davletova, Fotima Israilova, and Surayyo Usmanova

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Jun
6
Thu
2019
Confronting Atrocities in China: The Global Response to the Uyghur Crisis @ State Room George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs
Jun 6 @ 2:00 PM – Jun 7 @ 10:00 PM
Confronting Atrocities in China: The Global Response to the Uyghur Crisis @ State Room George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs
Confronting Atrocities in China: The Global Response to the Uyghur Crisis
__________________________________________
State Room
George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs
June 6-7 2019
OPENING CEREMONY : U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, Room HVC-201 (June 6, 10:00-12:30)
CONFERENCE: George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs (June 6, 14:00-June 7, 18:00)
The conference comes at a critical time as Uyghurs are face an unprecedented attack on their identity through an extensive network of political indoctrination camps where up to two million have been arbitrarily detained since April 2017.
Despite greater attention to the issue in 2018 as a result of consistent activism, the camps continue to operate and China’s repression continues to escalate. In recognition of the seriousness and urgency of this issue, the WUC, UHRP, UAA and the Central Asia Program have organized this conference, inviting activists and experts from around the world to discuss the crisis.
The primary aim of the conference will be to bring together political leaders, international agencies, human rights activists, academic experts, Uyghur leaders and the Uyghurcommunity abroad to provide updates on the responses underway and to collectively develop additional strategies to pressure the Chinese government to close the camps and respect Uyghurs’ and other Turkic Muslims’ fundamental rights.
The event will include speakers from various disciplines to discuss and address key questions on how best to galvanize further support for Uyghurs’ rights, to mount a coordinated campaign to pressure China to close the camps, ensure accountability for those responsible for ongoing abuses, and adopt measures to safeguard the fundamental rights of Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims in China and abroad. Discussion will focus on witness testimony, a review of evidence, legal and academic approaches, media responses, government responses, and the status of international human rights advocacy.
The conference will mark the first instance in which activists, political leaders, academics, lawyers and experts from a wide range of disciplines will be brought together to share expertise and collectively work towards solutions to push China to close the camps. The conference will look to formulate a holistic, multi-disciplinary and global response to thecrisis.
The conference also intends to explore the repression of Uyghurs and the crisis in East Turkistan more broadly and conference outcomes are expected to include coordinated international advocacy and humanitarian-relief strategies for Uyghur refugees, children, and others affected by the crisis.
The World Uyghur Congress is convening this event in collaboration with our diverse partners at a critical time for the Uyghur community

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