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Neil Hauer is an independent analyst focused on Syria, Russia, and the Caucasus. Based in Tbilisi, Georgia, he served as senior intelligence analyst at The SecDev Group, an Ottawa-based geopolitical risk consultancy, for three years. He is presently engaged primarily on Russia’s role in the Syrian conflict.
The Majlis Podcast is a five-year-running production of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty's Central Asia (RFE/RL) service. The podcast features journalists, academics, and researchers as guests in addition to its host, Muhammad Tahir.
The current episode runs down the present year and looks ahead to 2019, with journalist Joanna Lillis, RFE/RL stalwart Bruce Pannier, and academic Luca Anchesci joining Tahir. The year was largely a disappointing one for Central Asia: governments in Kazakhstan and Tajikistan cracked down further on political opposition and civil society, while Kyrgyzstan saw a marred election and heavy political infighting. Turkmenistan continued to descend further into economic crisis and food shortages, while Uzbekistan, seemingly the one bright spot, has stopped its reforms short of political opening, with the 2019 parliamentary elections likely to echo previous rubber-stamp contests. 2019 does not appear to be shaping up to be a very auspicious one for Central Asia.
This is an expert-laden discussion forum that regularly features the finest experts out there on Central Asia and should be a mainstay for watchers of the region.