Posted by: Sam Carson | 11 January, 2007


According to the Open Society Institute, one of Berdymukhammedov’s first actions was to arrest the speaker of parliament, Ovezgeldy Atayev, who, according to the constitution, should have been Niyazov’s successor. Atayev was then criminally charged, effectively taking him out of the running for president. Also, Nurberdy Numammedov, the last political opposition figure living in Turkmenistan, was abducted and beaten after his nomination as an opposition presidential candidate. He has not been seen since his abduction.


Like many, I had hoped that the freakshow politics of Turkmenistan might follow Niyazov into his grave when he died last month. It would appear that I am mistaken.

Turkmenistan is one of the world’s worst Human Rights offenders. The democratic process here is a blatant sham. Western powers should use this time, when leadership is loose and not solidified, to lean on the new leaders and corporations who profit from this awful government.

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Tags: Berdymukhammedov | democracy | Turkmenistan | Politics | Niyazov

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