Ben Paarmann

I hold an MPhil in Development Studies from the University of Cambridge and have grown fond of Central Asia over the last couple of years. Which is why founded neweurasia, a blog network about the five former Soviet countries of the region. Mostly irrelevant ramblings can be found on my personal blog.

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Latest posts by Ben Paarmann

Armenia: Election update

  28 August 2007

Onnik Krikorian posts the latest developments in the run-up to next year's presidential elections in Armenia. This week's news include the growing rumours that a successful ex-politician might enter the scene to compete against the ruling Republican Party.

Tajikistan: Getting a haircut

  28 August 2007

John Musarra retells his ordeal of trying to get a haircut in downtown Dushanbe. Tajikistan's summers are hot, dusty and difficult to cope with. The barbershop John chose, however, proved equally difficult to cope with.

Central Asia: Clan-tastic

  23 August 2007

Christine Quirk looks at how clans shape political behaviour and in how far they make it difficult to enfranchise groups who might have different viewpoints or are far down on the clan power structure.

Turkmenistan: Prisoner amnesty

  23 August 2007

Bonnie Boyd notes that by releasing 11 prisoners who were allegedly implicated in a failed plot to kill his predecessor, the new Turkmen president Berdymukhamedov continues to move in the direction of reform.

Kyrgyzstan: Naryn

  22 August 2007

Ivar Dale takes his readers on a trip to Naryn, on which he meets characters that each tell their story of life in Kyrgyzstan's highest, coldest and poorest region.

Tajikistan: New legislation

  21 August 2007

At neweurasia, Madina lists several of the new laws and regulations that were stipulated by the Tajik government recently. Many of them are absurd and remind Madina of an 18th-century caliphate.

Central Asia: Which port to choose?

  21 August 2007

As a landlocked region, Central Asia is reliant on other countries’ maritime infrastructure to integrate with world markets. On, Kayumars Turkistani evaluates two potential seaports, Gwadar in Pakistan and Chabahar in Iran.

Kazakhstan: Sham elections

  21 August 2007

Arthur concludes that Kazakhstan's parliamentary elections which took place this weekend were seriously flawed, both because of irregularities on voting day itself and, equally important, because of skewed media coverage of the poll's contestants. Plus: Bonnie Boyd writes a great backgrounder on the elections.

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