Monday, March 28, 2016

How To Be The Next Central Asian Leader

Nearly 25 years after they became independent, the five Central Asian states are now very distinct countries, so there is no road map to the top that would apply to all. The succession process will be different in each country.

In Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, the two largest countries in the region in terms of population, the presidents are the same people who were first secretaries of the Communist Party of their respective Soviet socialist republics when the U.S.S.R. disintegrated in late 1991. For citizens of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbaev, who will be 76 in July, has been the only president they've known. The same is true in Uzbekistan where Islam Karimov, who turned 78 at the end of January, has been the leader since the very beginning.

Being the second president will be difficult in these countries. But to get even that far, such a person will need help.

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