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Russia-Ukraine war: Putin finds himself tested even by most reliable allies

Central Asia remains tethered to Russia through basics like trade and pipelines, and that won't change overnight

Vladimir Putin

Photo: Bloomberg

Clara Ferreira Marques | Bloomberg
Slumped, underwhelmed and mildly irked, Vladimir Putin listened in silence as Tajikistan’s veteran autocrat Emomali Rahmon seized the opportunity presented by a regional get-together to berate the Russian president, issue rambling counsel and demand “respect.” It was a snapshot of Moscow’s current predicament, eight months into a supposed blitzkrieg in Ukraine — and more telling than either side intended.
Tajikistan is not just any ally. It’s a poor nation of some 10 million that’s home to Moscow’s largest overseas military base. Remittances made up more than a quarter of its GDP even during the pandemic, most of that from migrant

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First Published: Oct 20 2022 | 9:33 AM IST

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