Tajikistan

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 Melanie, Maynat Kurbanova, Edit Schlaffer and Salita Salamova with Women Without Borders’s Mothers Schools certificates in Vienna. Photograph: Daniel McLaughlin

Journalist Maynat Kurbanova fled Chechnya after receiving death threats for reporting on the atrocities that Russian security forces committed against(...)

A still image from a video posted by the Taliban on social media in December 2016 of American Caitlan Coleman, her Canadian husband Joshua Boyle, and their two sons. Photograph: Handout/Reuters

An American woman, her Canadian husband and their three young children have been released after years held captive by a network with ties to the Talib(...)

A veiled woman sits  on a bench near an installation of wedding dresses by Lebanese artist Mireille Honein and Abaad activist organisation  at Beirut’s corniche in April. The installation was a criticism of Lebanon’s law allowing rapists who married their victims to go free. Photograph:   Patrick Baz/AFP/Getty Images

The Lebanese parliament has repealed a controversial 1940s law permitting rapists to escape prosecution by marrying their victims. Article 522 of the (...)

One of Ireland’s best loved children’s books comes to mind when reading this week’s choice for new fiction. Marita Conlon McKenna’s Under the Hawthorn(...)

Travel writer and backpacker  Jonny Blair   at the Blue Mosque in Mazar-i-Sharif during a 2016 visit: The city – the third-largest in Afghanistan – was one of the first to fall in 2001 after the American-led invasion

From Bangor, Co Down, Jonny Blair has travelled to Afghanistan, Iraq, El Salvador and many places you may not have even ever heard of – such as Transn(...)

The snow leopards range across the snowy mountains of a dozen countries in Central and South Asia, but their numbers had declined in recent decades as hunters sought their spotted pelts and farmers killed them to protect livestock. Photograph: Getty Images

A unique conservation effort in Afghanistan has helped bring the elusive snow leopard back from the brink and given hope to one of the poorest and mos(...)

St Michael the Archangel church, Bishkek, which was built in 1969 by ethnic Germans. According to Fr Janez Michelcic, a Slovenian Catholic priest who gives the weekly English-language sermon, 60-70 people attend Mass on Sundays – yet none of the congregation speaks English.

Down a dusty lane in the outskirts of northern Bishkek sits an unremarkable two-storey building. Atop is placed a slight, solitary cross. In an overwh(...)

Former  Uzbek president Islam Karimov:  The Soviet-era strongman who had ruled Uzbekistan since before the fall of the Berlin Wall has no official successor. Photograph: Brendan Smialowski/Pool Photo via AP

Uzbekistan’s veteran dictator Islam Karimov has died, leaving central Asia’s most populous country in a state of turmoil and political uncertainty. T(...)

Uzbek president Islam Karimov is believed to have had a stroke. Some journalists citing reliable sources say he is dead and succession plans are secretly being made. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/AFP/Getty Images

Since emerging from the ruins of the Soviet Union a quarter of a century ago, central Asian states have rarely, if ever, marked their sovereignty amid(...)

 Uzbek President Islam Karimov speaks during a joint news conference at the Kremlin in Moscow. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

Authoritarian Uzbek leader Islam Karimov is in stable condition in an intensive care ward after suffering a brain haemorrhage on Saturday, his daughte(...)

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