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Tajikistan Mulling CentAsexit?

24 May

Lord Venal is just back from observing Tajikistan’s referendum, which gave a resounding yes vote to some controversial proposals.

After the referendum, that was conducted in a spirit of tolerance and democracy on 22 May, it is looking increasingly likely that Tajikistan will opt to leave Central Asia in a move dubbed CentAsexit.

Dushanbe has long contended that Central Asia in its current form is an undemocratic, Turkic-speaking club with the other members bullying poor little Tajikistan over water and its right to construct the Rogan dam.

Long-time leader, Shah Rahmon, whose unlimited term rights  were confirmed in the referendum, argues that Tajikistan would be a better fit in a Farsi-centric bloc called Middle Asia, comprising Iran, Afghanistan and the Tajik nation.

The referendum also paved the way for the Shah’s son to ascend the throne in good time. This will be following in the footsteps of other regional potentates such as Azerbaijan’s Ilam Aliyev who succeeded his father Heydar Aliyev, and Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, who ascended to the throne after the demise of his father, Hafez al-Assad. That all went well, didn’t it …

 

 

 

Sensational Statue Offer for 2016

26 Jan

Lord Venal’s email box is constantly deluged with spam messages, but after receiving this unsolicited advert he was curious to know if any reader has tried this company’s services. As his father passed away not long ago and he was seeking a suitable monument for his (sadly rather neglected) Rutland estate, this seemed a gift from above (well, at least from the British Virgin Islands). But you can never be too careful. All advice on their suitability gratefully received.

Never forget what your Dad looks like….

Ever embarrassed at forgetting what your Dad really looked like? Need a reminder for the grandchildren of what a great bloke your late lamented Dad was? Now we have the ideal solution for you, available at competitive rates to suit any ruler’s pocket:

http://www.statuesofmydad.com

Arrange for one of our representatives to make a sympathetic visit, where you can discuss how you would like your esteemed late lamented parent to be represented. We offer a range of sizes, materials and styles to suit all tastes, from highly tasteful to extravagantly tacky. Choose a matching plinth to complete the package.

Once you have made your selection, we present a video image of the model statue for approval. We then manufacture the artwork using our skilled craftsmen in our own workshops, before careful transportation and installation of the finished product.

…NEW THIS MONTH… Buy 3, get 1 free!

Testimonials:

“Despite their name this company actually did a very nice statue of my Mum” – Mr. Turkmenbashi, Turkmenistan

“I’ve used this company more times than my staff care to remember – I can never have too many statues of my Dad. They are so uncannily alike, they’re spooky” – Mr. H. Aliyev, Azerbaijan

prezident_mingecevir_24022015_03

“Hello Dad!” – Mr Aliyev kindly sent a picture from his family album of his visit to his favourite statue.

“The statues provided of our Eternal President were delivered on time and under budget” – Mr. Kim Jong-il, North Korea

“Well, we might just as well have gone back to the same company again” – Mr. Kim Jong-un, North Korea

Newly launched….

By popular request, we have now launched an additional line – please go to our new dedicated website for more details:

http://www.statuesofmygranddad.com

Solving your location problems also…

Having trouble finding locations for all these statues of your beloved relative? Running out of suitable locations in your own properties? Not a problem! Our sister company can help. They will find parks in any number of beautiful cities of the world who will fall over themselves to offer a place of honour specially for YOUR Dad.

http://www.parksformydadstatue.com

Our specialist consultant can run through the various packages available, ranging from a simple installation in a corner of an existing beautiful park, to the Golden Park Package. This premium package is not to be missed and includes:

– full renovation of a tired and run-down park into a beautiful shrine to your beloved relative

– bulldozing any unsightly nearby buildings which harm the aesthetic ambience

– renaming the entire new park in your ancestor’s honour

– a complete set of top-ranking political, artistic and religious leaders from the host city and nation to grace the opening ceremony

– recording of opening ceremony for prime television coverage on all local and international broadcast channels

– threatening and smearing any ungracious local who fails to see the benefits of honouring your ancestor in a beautiful, prime city location.

Moscow: Eurasian Economic Union Name Dispute Rumbles on

8 May

More top-level meetings are taking place in Moscow as the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan talk with other possible member states about the expanding Eurasian Economic Union project. The sides are believed to be trying to come up with an acronym for the regional grouping.

Kazakhstan is said to favour KRB while Belarus is said to be leaning towards BRK. Russia has proposed Armenia be fast-tracked into the fledgling economic union to bring a much-needed vowel to the possible acronyms. Kazaxia likes the sound of BARK, other observers are keen on KRAB.

This ‘A’ is a significant development as ‘U’ is currently off the agenda as it doesn’t look like Ukraine or Uzbekistan will be joining any time soon, and Azerbaijan won’t join anything that involves its arch rival Armenia.

Further complications could be on the horizon as Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan are possible contenders for membership. It is not clear where these letters would go. Syria is an outside bet for inclusion in this intercontinental economic club – an ‘S’ is always useful, as any scrabble player knows.

Turkic Body Talk

13 Sep

Here’s an interesting image from last month’s meeting of the Turkic Council in Azerbaijan. Look who’s holding centre stage – yes, it’s none other than Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev. Paying rapt attention to the elder statesman of Turkic politics are Kyrgyzstan’s President Almazbek Atambayev, Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev and his bespectacled friend. Turkey’s President Abdullah Gül looks on bemused as the others chat away, presumably, in Russian. Kazaxia’s favourite is the uncomfortable looking guy on the far left – Turkmenistan’s Vice-President Sapardurdi Toylıyev, who appears to be to nervous to catch anyone’s eye less he get into trouble back in Ashgabat.

Turkic Council not effective due to conflicting interests

Kazakhstan Cool on Links with Georgia, Azerbaijan Football League

17 Apr

Could Kazakhstan be on the verge of joining forces with Georgia and Azerbaijan to form a trans-Caspian football league?

If reports from NEWS.am, an Armenian source, are to be believed then the Georgian Football Federation is about to submit plans to the Union of European Football Unions (UEFA) for a super league combining the leagues of Georgia, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. It appears that the Armenians are not invited.

The report ends with a denial from the Kazakhstan Football Federation, announcing that it has no plans to join such a league. This is probably a wise move as the travel for away matches would be huge. If, for instance, FC Dinamo Batumi were to face Almaty’s FC Kairat, they would be looking at an 8,600 km round trip. Not a very attractive prospect for either the players or the travelling supporters.

An added complication would be the fact that Kazakhstan’s top division plays its football from March to November, while Georgia and Azerbaijan play in the winter months from September to May.