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Notorious Uzbek leader welcomes Kerry to Silk Road citadel

Uzbek President Islam Karimov (C) and US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) shake hands at Samarkand Airport on November 1, 2015US Secretary of State John Kerry brought his Central Asia diplomatic caravan to the Silk Road citadel of Samarkand on Sunday and was welcomed by a notorious strongman. President Islam Karimov, the 77-year-old autocrat who has ruled Uzbekistan for a quarter-century since independence, hosted Kerry at his sprawling palace complex. Kerry was keen to discuss closer US economic ties with Central Asia and cooperation in the battle against the Islamic State group, which recruits in the region.

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