Attention! All Aboard

250km/h, speed of Uzbekistan’s finest train, the Afrosiyob The early morning sun shone definitively through the dust-covered, weathered window pane, as our train trundled through a landscape of hillside foliage. We were on a journey from Uzbekistan’s capital, Tashkent towards the great Silk Road city of Kokand, now the perfect introduction to the Fergana Valley […]

Sardobinsky Dam Breach – A Loud Wake-Up Call

The catastrophic breach of the dam earlier this year provides the perfect opportunity for the Uzbek government to learn from and improve its energy policy towards a sustainable future that goes hand in hand with economic reforms in the country. By Iain Watt, IGI Solutions, regional expert in water security Early in the morning of […]

FROM MASSACHUSETTS TO TASHKENT: A CAREER IN INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS

WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM OCA#35 SUMMER 2020 Interview with Michael Schena recorded by Saniya Seilkhanova Growing up in Plymouth, Massachusetts and later studying at Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he pursued a degree in International Affairs, Michael Schena decided to pursue a career that would allow him travel and work. A regular visitor to […]

Lecture about Savitsky Museum helps to raise funds for anti-COVID-19 campaign in Uzbekistan

Last Sunday, Solidarity with Uzbekistan, a digital fundraising campaign benefited from yet another webinar to help raise money for the vulnerable people affected by COVID-19 lockdown in the country. An interesting lecture about the Savitsky Museum given by its former director Marinika Babanazarova was fully booked. Held at 3pm in London, the Zoom-session attracted over […]

Transforming Education in Uzbekistan: A President’s Initiative

Stories and reminders of Uzbekistan’s great scientists and scholars of the past can be found everywhere in the country. Travellers on the magnificent Tashkent subway, when stopping at the Kosmonavtlar station, can walk the length of the platform and view a gallery of those who built, influenced and pioneered the Soviet space program. In chronological […]

PUSHING THROUGH UZBEKISTAN’S NEW REFORMS INTERVIEW: AKTAM KHAITOV

Aktam Khaitov has held many roles in Uzbek politics. Currently the Leader of the Uzbekistan Liberal Democrat Party, he cut his teeth in several previous government roles as Minister of Employment and Labour Relations and General Director of the Uzbek Agency of Standardisation, Metrology and Certification (Uzstandard). Uzbekistan has changed significantly since the death of […]

CULTURAL CROSSROADS: TWO WOMEN’S JOURNEY ALONG THE PAMIR HIGHWAY.

In July & August 2018, two British women Catherine & Hannah, undertook the 2500km drive, unaided, along the Pamir Highway, famously the 2nd highest road on Earth, reaching altitudes of 4500m and coursing through the heart of Central Asia. Their mission: to reach, live with and film the women living along it. During their time […]

KURASH – TASHKENT HOSTS INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENT IN MEMORY OF ISLAM KARIMOV FOR THE PRIZE OF THE PRESIDENT OF UZBEKISTAN

Tashkent played host to a prestigious international Kurash tournament in September attracting athletes from across the globe to compete for $100 000 of prize money. Great Britain were represented by Neil Schofield and Paul Sawyer at this event which paid homage to the nation’s first President, the late Islam Karimov, whilst also celebrated the 20th […]

Uzbekistan’s Zara King Gracefully Conquers MISS USSR UK 2018

MISS USSR UK is a fascinating show, with the contestants from all the different countries of the former Soviet Union, organised by Russian entrepreneur and founder, Julia Titova. The international beauty pageant MISS USSR UK, now in its sixth successive year, is gaining popularity more and more in London and beyond. After ten finalists competed […]

Sharaf Rashidov’s 100th birth anniversary: remembering the Uzbek statesman and a writer

This year marks the 100th anniversary since birth of Sharaf R. Rashidov, the first secretary of the Uzbek communist party (in office from 1959 until 1983). Rashidov was born on November the 6th 1917, the day before the Bolsheviks under Lenin seized power in Russia. His birthday seems symbolical as he would become the highest […]

The Sara Ishanturaeva Prize

Sara Ishanturaeva was a renowned theatre and film actress, People’s Artist of the USSR and icon of dramatic art in Soviet Uzbekistan. Along with holding an extensive resume of outstanding roles in plays such as Ostrovskii’s Thunderstorm and Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Othello, Sara was also the deputy to the 2nd, 3rd and 4th convocations of […]

Post-Soviet Women in Transition—Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan Compared

There are many common paradoxes and anomalies regarding the position of women in the former Soviet Muslim republics of Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. These arise from the Soviet legacy of gender equality on the one hand, and patriarchal traditions on the other. The resurgence of Islam as an identity marker in the new independent era […]

The Shadow of History – The Last Emir of Bukhara

In the orange early morning light, women holding parasols walked their children to school down gravel alleyways filled with the ever present hum of air-con units. Broom-wielding figures in high-viz orange jackets cast bulbous shadows as they swept the dust from side to side. As the sun arced towards its zenith a haze developed, the […]

UZPROMSTROYBANK: A UNIQUE INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY

OCA #22 SUMMER 2016 WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM Over the past few years, the government of Uzbekistan has undertaken comprehensive measures to reduce state presence in the economy in order to attract foreign investors and create favourable conditions for their active participation in corporate governance. The Republic of Uzbekistan is currently of great interest to foreign investors. The […]

MAKING IT TO THE TOP

OCA #21  SPRING 2016  WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM INTERVIEW WITH ACTOR RASHID SHADAT Uzbek actor, Rashid Shadat talks to OCA’s Aleksandra Vlsasova about his life as an international actor. 2015 saw him involved in many well known films and television programs, including 24 (TV series), Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Now You See […]

ONE DOES NOT TRAVEL TO TULA WITH ONE’S OWN SAMOVAR

OCA #21  SPRING 2015  WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM Text by Christopher Schwartz Photo: Umida Ahmedova It is no secret that at present there is growing discomfort with Western influence throughout Central Asia. One can encounter it from elite and everyman alike. From a Western perspective, it is easy and tempting to attribute the emerging difficulties to various cynical […]

Bukhara deer of Khangul

Large, dense forests, called galleries, riparian forests, extend along the banks of the big and small rivers in the Central Asia. These woods provide shelter and food for many animals, the largest among them being the Bukhara deer of Khangul. This Tugai deer is endemic to the region, is a subspecies of the red deer […]