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The Taliban Threat to Central Asia

Last week, Taliban militants launched a series of coordinated attacks, capturing a key district on the Afghanistan-Turkmenistan border and scorching numerous government buildings in their wake.

As the northern border of Afghanistan becomes a flashpoint for a revitalized Taliban insurgency, President Obama has extended the presence of U.S. troops in the country, and leaders from several Central Asian nations, including Turkmenistan, are scrambling to deal with the deteriorating security situation.

In this edition of RFE/RLive, we examine the Taliban's resurgence in northern Afghanistan, and its implications for Afghanistan’s Central Asian neighbors.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015
Washington, D.C.--8:00 a.m. / Prague--2:00 p.m. / Kabul--4:30 p.m.

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Watch the discussion here:

Mustafa Bag is a journalist covering international affairs with a focus on Afghanistan. He is currently on assignment in Kabul with Euro News TV. Previously, he served as the Afghanistan correspondent for Turkey’s largest news channel NTV and Turkish Cihan News Agency. Mustafa recently returned from northern Afghanistan.

Dr. David Lewis is a senior lecturer at the University of Exeter, with a focus on international security and conflict studies. His expertise includes post-Soviet politics, notably in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Previously, he served as the Central Asia Director at the International Crisis Group.

Bruce Pannier, the editor of Qishloq Ovozi, RFE/RL’s Central Asian blog, has covered Central Asia and energy issues for RFE/RL since 1997. Pannier also worked as an analyst with the Open Media Research Institute in Prague, and in 1992r led a University of Manchester and Soros Cultural Initiative Foundation-sponsored sociological project in Central Asia that allowed him to live in rural Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

Moderator -- Muhammad Tahir is Director of RFE/RL's Turkmenistan Service. He joined RFE in 2002 as an editor and broadcaster for the Turkmen Service in Prague. He has also worked as a regional correspondent for IHA Turkish Television News Agency in Islamabad and Kabul, from 1999-2002.