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Russia Seeks To Drive Wedge Into Central Asia

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Russia appears to be practicing a bit of "divide-and-conquer" politics in Central Asia, and state-owned Gazprom is spearheading the campaign.
 
On January 4, Russia's main news agencies quoted a "source" within Gazprom Export, the Gazprom wing charged with handling gas imports from other countries, saying Russia would not be importing any gas from Turkmenistan this year. Shortly after, those same Russian news agencies quoted what they said was the same source saying a new deal had been reached for gas supplies from Uzbekistan.
 
At the time, the "source" provided no further details. He or she did not need to; the reasons seem clear enough.
 
Turkmenistan has been a thorn in the Kremlin's side for many years now. Turkmenistan downgraded its participation in the CIS to "associate" status a decade ago and Ashgabat does not participate in any of the Russian-led intra-CIS groupings, such as the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) or Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).
 

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Copyright (c) 2016. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Russia Seeks To Drive Wedge Into Central Asia

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