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Last Updated: Friday, 31 October, 2003, 18:02 GMT
Holidays in the Danger Zone: Meet the Stans
Meet the Stans was broadcast every evening from Monday, 3 November to Thursday, 6 November, 2003, at 2320 GMT on BBC Two.

In Meet the Stans, the BBC's Holidays in the Danger Zone series takes a look at Central Asia.

In this four-part co-production between BBC Two's Correspondent programme and BBC Four, Simon Reeve travels around Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, bringing the viewer a unique insight into these countries' culture and politics.



Monday, 3 November, 2003, BBC Two at 2320 GMT

The Kazak Beatles tribute band
The Kazak Beatles tribute band entertains the town of Kyzylorda
Simon Reeve's journey around Central Asia begins in Kazakhstan.

The country has oil deposits thought to rival those of Saudi Arabia.

However, Simon also discovers former biological weapons factories with poor security and housing a hundred types of plague, a shrinking sea now home to camel farmers, and the region's best Beatles tribute band.

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Tuesday, 4 November, 2003, BBC Two at 2320 GMT

With none of Kazakhstan's natural resources, Kyrgyzstan is the only country in the world with both an American and a Russian military base.

Simon also meets a member of a banned radical Islamic group before putting on a protective suit to visit one of the world's most highly radioactive sites.

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Wednesday, 5 November, 2003, BBC Two at 2320 GMT

In the ancient silk-road city of Bukhara
With a young guide in the ancient silk-road city of Bukhara
In the most repressive of the "Stans" visited, Simon finds himself followed by the secret police as he travels across the country.

He meets the country's most famous pop star, visits a bodyguard training school, breaks the law by playing snooker and meets women at a marriage bureau for Uzbeks wanting western husbands.

He then ends his journey in the stunning ancient cities of Bukhara and Samarkand.

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Thursday, 6 November, 2003, BBC Two at 2320 GMT

Sharing an 800-mile border with Afghanistan, which provides 90% of Europe's heroin, Tajikistan is one of the world's biggest drug trafficking routes.

Simon joins a drugs raid, visits a warehouse with 100 million worth of heroin, and gets drunk with the conscripts who survive on just $5 a month while patrolling the Afghan border, one of the most dangerous in the world.

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Reporter: Simon Reeve
Series Producer: Will Daws
Executive Producers: Karen O'Connor and Lucy Hetherington




SEE ALSO:
Country profile: Kazakhstan
27 Jun 03  |  Country profiles
Country profile: Kyrgyzstan
24 Sep 03  |  Country profiles
Country profile: Uzbekistan
17 Sep 03  |  Country profiles
Country profile: Tajikistan
24 Jun 03  |  Country profiles


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