Articles by Michael Steen

Vote Will Test Kazakhstan's Democracy

  • 16 August 07
  • Reuters
ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- Parliamentary elections will be held in Kazakhstan on Saturday in a test of its leader's commitment to democratic reform, a commitment he may have already undermined by seizing the right to remain in office for life.

Kazakh 'Bribe' Cash Goes to Poor Kids

  • 07 May 07
  • Reuters
A frozen Swiss bank account containing $84 million that U.S. prosecutors say was intended as bribes for Kazakh officials is to be spent on projects to help poor children in Kazakhstan, U.S. and Swiss officials said.

Mystery Over Next Turkmen President

  • 14 February 07
  • Reuters
U.S., Russian and Chinese officials prepared to fly to Turkmenistan on Tuesday to meet the nation's new leader, without officially knowing his identity.

Updating the Death Business

  • 31 January 07
  • Reuters
The row of Italian coffins in a disused cafe reflect Alexander Korzukhin's dream to make death more civilized in Kazakhstan.

In Almaty, the Hungry Do Eat a Horse

  • 23 October 06
  • Reuters
It felt like I had been chewing for days, yet the plate of stewed horse, lamb and unidentified liver, served on a bed of greasy dough, appeared to be getting no smaller.

British Architect Builds First Kazakh Pyramid

  • 17 October 06
  • Reuters
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev pays homage to himself with a 62-meter pyramid in the center of the financial capital.

Kazakh Oil to Pose Challenge for U.S.

  • 27 September 06
  • Reuters
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev was to fly to the United States on Tuesday for a visit that might be smiles and backslapping on the surface but would raise difficult questions for Washington and the West.

Fake Reporter Annoys Kazakhstan

  • 20 September 06
  • Reuters
There are plenty of odd things about Kazakhstan, but making women ride on the outside of a bus and drinking fermented horse urine are not among them.

Kazakh Financial Police Squeeze Out Winemaker

  • 03 August 06
  • Reuters
Although Kazakh laws are meant to encourage small business, their implementation leaves room for improvement.

First Brazilian Astronaut Packs Soccer Team's Shirt

  • 30 March 06
  • Reuters
Marcos Pontes says he will take the shirt when he blasts off Thursday in hope Brazil becomes a six-time world champion this year.

Kazakh President Issues a Warning

  • 02 March 06
  • Reuters
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev told police on Wednesday to take a tough line with lawbreakers, in a veiled warning that no more public protests over the killing of an opposition politician would be tolerated.

Nazarbayev Sworn In After Criticized Vote

  • 12 January 06
  • Reuters
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev was sworn into office for another seven-year term on Wednesday following an election last month that poll monitors said was flawed.

Liberal President to Some, Mild Dictator to Others

  • 06 December 05
  • Reuters
Asked by a visiting U.S. reporter if he was a dictator, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said recently: ""Judge for yourself,"" and rattled off statistics on the country's free media.

Soros, Kazakh Official Clash Over Repression

  • 16 June 05
  • Reuters
Billionaire U.S. financier and democracy advocate George Soros publicly clashed with Kazakhstan's foreign minister on Wednesday, accusing the oil-producing Central Asian country of adopting repressive policies.

Jeers, Not Cheers, Greet Russian Clinic in Kabul

  • 03 December 01
  • Reuters
Russia opened a high-tech field hospital in downtown Kabul on Sunday, but some locals remain deeply sceptical about the intentions of these new arrivals.

Kalashnikov-Toting Russians Bewilder Kabul

  • 28 November 01
  • Reuters
About 100 men from Russia's Emergency Situations Ministry have arrived in Kabul as part of Moscow's pledge to provide humanitarian relief for a now war-ravaged Afghanistan.

Diplomat Upbeat on New Kabul Leadership

  • 21 November 01
  • Reuters
Russia's envoy to Afghanistan has received assurances that any future government will be broad-based.

Pope's Visit to Ukraine Heals and Hurts

  • 21 June 01
  • Reuters
The Pope's trip to Ukraine will be a chance to lay to rest Soviet repression, but is also fraught with the risk of opening wounds between the Orthodox and Catholic faiths.

Freed Kiev Politican in the Hospital

  • 29 March 01
  • Reuters
A leading critic of President Leonid Kuchma was recovering in the hospital Wednesday after spending six weeks in a grim jail.

Rally: Kuchma Has Blood on Hands

  • 15 March 01
  • Reuters
Protesters left a glassful of blood outside Ukraine's Interior Ministry on Wednesday, accusing President Leonid Kuchma of having blood on his hands after a reporter's murder.

Russia and Ukraine Take a Trip Down Military Memory Lane

  • 11 March 01
  • Reuters
Workers smile, security men open doors, the director shows off plans for an environmentally friendly trolley-bus -- the Yuzhmash factory no longer looks like the Soviet Union's most-feared missile plant.

Kuchma Warns of Looming Collapse

  • 15 February 01
  • Reuters
Ukraine faces collapse because of the furore over Leonid Kuchma's alleged role in the kidnap of an opposition journalist, an interview quoted the president saying Wednesday.

Kuchma Fires Reformist Minister

  • 22 January 01
  • Reuters
Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma has sacked Deputy Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, a key member of the pro-reform government who had been indicted on criminal charges.

Ukrainian Prosecutor Says Corpse is Likely Reporter's

  • 11 January 01
  • Reuters
A decapitated and decaying corpse at the centre of a political scandal enveloping Ukraine's leadership is in all likelihood that of a missing journalist, the country's top prosecutor said on Wednesday.

Chernobyl Reactor in Emergency Shutdown

  • 06 December 00
  • Reuters
Engineers shut down the last functioning reactor at Chernobyl nuclear power station Wednesday after a leak of steam, the station said.

U.S.: No Snub Intended on Mideast

  • 19 October 00
  • Reuters
A U.S. official said no snub was intended when Russia was left out of the Middle East summit this week.

Putin Gives Pre-Olympic Pep Talk

  • 31 August 00
  • Reuters
President Vladimir Putin met and spoke with Russia's Olympic Team on Wednesday to express his hopes and confidence in the nation's representatives at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Putin Flies North to Meet Families, Pay Respects

  • 23 August 00
  • Reuters
Vladimir Putin arrived in Severomorsk on Tuesday to pay tribute to the 118 sailors who died in the Kursk.

Putin: Sailors' Rescue Unlikely

  • 19 August 00
  • Reuters
Vladimir Putin said Friday there had been little chance from the start to save the crew of the Kursk.

Soviets Unprepared in 1989 Sinking

  • 16 August 00
  • Reuters
The Kursk's crew will find little solace in Russia's last major submarine disaster, which costs 42 lives.