Eurasia This Week: October 14, 2021

October 14, 2021

A weekly review of news and analysis of elections in Eurasia, usually posted on Thursdays and occasionally updated throughout the week. For a full electoral calendar and interactive map, click here.

The 16th century Barak-Khan Madrasah in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. Photo credit: Wikimedia/Ymblanter (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Upcoming Eurasia Elections

Uzbekistan Presidential Election: October 24, 2021

Uzbekistan is holding a presidential election on October 24, 2021. Elections in Uzbekistan are neither free nor fair, and political opposition is not able to operate freely in the country. Although some had hoped that President Shavkat Mirziyoyev would face a serious challenger this year, that looks increasingly unlikely as would-be challengers are either being denied ballot access or dropping outMore

Navbahor Imamova, Voice of America (October 14, 2021): Uzbek Election Eyed as Indicator of Nation’s Future

Alexander Ward and Quint Forgey, Politico (October 13, 2021): Congress is full of Uzbekistan stans

Human Rights Watch (October 13, 2021): Uzbekistan: Opponents Barred from Presidential Ballot

Joanna Lillis, Eurasianet (October 12, 2021): Uzbekistan: Spot the invisible election campaign

Kyrgyzstan Parliamentary Elections Take 2: November 28, 2021

Kyrgyzstan will hold parliamentary elections on November 28, 2021 – a re-run of the parliamentary elections that took place in October 2020. Those elections and allegations of fraud led to political turmoil, followed by a snap presidential election in January 2021 and a constitutional referendum (alongside local elections) in April 2021. The new constitution, which passed, grants the president vastly expanded powers. Its critics have dubbed it the “Khanstitution.” The political climate was tense heading into the October 2020 parliamentary elections. It subsequently exploded following said elections. More

Catherine Putz, The Diplomat (October 13, 2021): Japarov’s Kyrgyz Cabinet Shuffle: Japarov selected another Japarov (no relation) to head the new Cabinet of Ministers.

Past Eurasia Elections

Georgia Local Elections: October 2, 2021

Georgia held local elections on October 2, 2021 in a tense political climate, exacerbated by the arrest of former president Mikheil Saakashvili on the eve of the vote.

A recent uptick in violence against the LGBT community and journalists, perpetrated by far-right and pro-Kremlin forces, has fueled the wider debate about where Georgia is going, both culturally and geopolitically. More

AP (October 14, 2021): Thousands protest for Georgian ex-president’s release

Giorgi Lomsadze, Eurasianet (October 13, 2021): Saakashvili drama turns to courtroom: Georgia’s former president will soon face trial for a variety of charges connected to his time in office. But there is widespread concern the proceedings will be more about politics than justice.

RFE/RL (October 10, 2021): Jailed Georgian Ex-President Saakashvili Needs Hospital Treatment, Says Doctor

Lillian Posner, National Interest (October 9, 2021): Is Georgia’s Democracy Dying By 1,000 Cuts?

Russia Parliamentary Elections: September 17-19, 2021

Russia held parliamentary elections September 17-19, 2021. Russian elections are neither free nor fair. Nonetheless, the opposition has been making some gains in recent regional elections, helped by opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s “Smart Vote,” a campaign of tactical voting, in which they developed a list of candidates the best chance of beating Vladimir Putin’s United Russia.

Consequently, the Kremlin launched a brutal crackdown on the proposition, including imprisoning Navalny. Candidates who have worked with Navalny or supported him were banned from the election. Only one genuine opposition party – the liberal Yabloko – was able to field candidates. 

Moreover, international technology companies such as Google and Apple assisted the regime by removing apps associated with Navalny’s Smart Vote. More

Holly Ellyatt, CNBC (October 14, 2021): What is Putin’s greatest worry right now? His own citizens

Soso Dzamukashvili, Emerging Europe (October 14, 2021): How Russia used Duma elections to increase its influence in occupied territories

The Economist (October 11, 2021): Russian elections once again had a suspiciously neat result

Valerie Hopkins, New York Times (October 8, 2021): Nobel announcement draws mixed reactions from Russia, with frustration from Navalny supporters.

Adam Taylor and Robyn Dixon, Washington Post (October 8, 2021): Who is Dmitry Muratov, Russian journalist and co-winner of the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize?

Eurasia Elections Coming Up in 2021 and 2022

Georgia Local Elections: October 2, 2021

Uzbekistan Presidential Election: October 24, 2021

Kyrgyzstan Parliamentary Elections Take 2: November 28, 2021

Belarus Constitutional Referendum: By February 2022 (proposed)

21votes does not necessarily agree with all of the opinions expressed in the linked articles; rather, our goal is to curate a wide range of voices. Furthermore, none of the individuals or organizations referenced have reviewed 21votes’ content. That is to say, their inclusion should not be taken to imply that they endorse us in any way. More on our approach here.

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