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Turkmenistan News

Turkmenistan bans sex, 'bad habits' from TV

Ashgabat - Tightly controlled Turkmenistan has banned broadcasters from showing sex and encouraging "bad habits" in a law designed to create a "positive image" of the Central Asian country on the air.

Turkmenistan currency crisis seen causing cola shortage

Ashgabat - Fans of Coca-Cola in gas-rich Turkmenistan's capital Ashgabat are complaining they can no longer "taste the feeling": their favourite drink has disappeared from shop shelves amidst a sharpening economic crisis.

Chop and change? Turkmenistan stages Asian martial arts

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan's image-conscious strongman Gurbanguly Berymukhamedov on Sunday kicked off a 10-day regional sporting event the isolated country is hosting despite a slew of economic and rights concerns.

Horse-mad Turkmenistan claims to break strange world record

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan claimed Tuesday that the Central Asian country had broken a niche world record by building the world's "largest horse head sculpture" ahead of a sporting event it is preparing to host.

Turkmenistan bans alcohol ahead of flagship sporting event

Ashgabat - Reclusive Turkmenistan has banned sales of alcohol until October to ensure "public order" ahead of a key sporting event the country is hosting next month, an official in the trade ministry told AFP Saturday.

On first visit abroad, Uzbek leader unveils statue of predecessor

- Uzbekistan's President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on Tuesday unveiled a statue of his feared predecessor during his first official trip abroad to neighbouring Turkmenistan.

Magnanimous Turkmen strongman promotes vote rival

Ashgabat - In a generous gesture following an electoral victory in which he scooped 97 percent of the vote, Turkmenistan President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov has promoted his closest electoral rival, state media reported Tuesday.

Turkmenistan leader sworn in after almost uncontested electoral win

Ashgabat - Isolated Turkmenistan's strongman Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov was sworn in Friday in a grand ceremony after securing over 97 percent of an almost uncontested vote at the weekend.

Turkmen president wins new 7-year term with nearly 98% of vote

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan's reigning strongman Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov bagged a new seven-year term with nearly 98 percent of a weakly contested vote, electoral officials said Monday, following a preliminary count.

Turkmenistan votes in one-sided presidential poll

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan voted Sunday with a massive announced turnout in a presidential vote expected to tighten strongman Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov's hold over the gas-rich Central Asian country.

Turkmenistan votes in one-sided presidential poll

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan voted Sunday with a massive announced turnout in a presidential vote expected to tighten strongman Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov's hold over the gas-rich Central Asian country.

Turkmenistan votes in one-sided presidential poll

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan voted Sunday with a massive announced turnout in a presidential vote expected to tighten strongman Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov's hold over the gas-rich Central Asian country.

Turkmenistan halts gas flow to Iran in arrears row

Tehran - Turkmenistan halted gas supplies to Iran Sunday amid tensions between the two countries over arrears, the Iranian National Gas Company was quoted by oil ministry news agency Shana as saying.

Cult of Turkmen 'Father' fades into history, 10 years on

Ashgabat - Every time Meder Jumayev looks at his wristwatch, the pensioner is happy to see a familiar face looking back at him.

OSCE calls for release of journalist arrested in Turkmenistan

Bichkek - The Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe on Tuesday criticised authorities in repressive Turkmenistan following reports that an independent journalist was arrested for possessing chewing tobacco.

Turkmenistan to hold presidential vote in February

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan will hold a presidential vote on February 12 next year, state media reported Saturday, with President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov likely to compete unencumbered by any serious opposition.

Turkmenistan changes constitution to extend leader's rule

Ashgabat - Isolated Central Asian Turkmenistan on Wednesday passed constitutional changes that could pave the way for authoritarian leader Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov to rule the ex-Soviet nation for life.

HRW urges Merkel to address 'disappearances' in Turkmenistan

Berlin - Human Rights Watch on Thursday urged Chancellor Angela Merkel to bring up major rights violations, including a "policy of disappearances", when Germany hosts the president of Turkmenistan next week.

Turkmenistan leader sacks two ministers, tax chief

Ashgabat - Energy-rich Turkmenistan's President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov sacked two ministers and the top tax official, government media reported Saturday as low prices for hydrocarbon exports continue to bite.

Turkmenistan introduces mandatory pre-marital HIV tests

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan has passed a law making HIV tests mandatory prior to marriage, state media reported on Wednesday, in a sign the reclusive Central Asian state fears the spread of a disease it has always downplayed.

Turkmen leader sacks key aide amid graft charges

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan's President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov has sacked his administration chief, complaining of corruption and mismanagement, state television said Saturday, as economic troubles begin to mount in the isolated Central Asian state.

Turkmenistan pulls cigarettes from shelves in anti-smoking bid

Ashgabat - Turkmenistan's authorities have forced shops to stop selling cigarettes, traders in Ashgabat said Thursday, after its president urged citizens to kick the habit.

Songs of praise: Turkmenistan president's hymn sets new record

Ashgabat - A choir of 4,166 people in isolated ex-Soviet Turkmenistan has broken a world record by singing a hymn penned by the nation's strongman president, in the latest choreographed show of support.

Turkmen president's birthday celebrations reinforce personality cult

Ashgabat - Citizens of gas-rich Turkmenistan marked strongman President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov's 58th birthday in the national capital Ashgabat Monday by attending the opening of an ostentatious park named in his honour.

UN chief wraps Central Asia visit, citing rights fears

Ashgabat - United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-moon on Saturday warned of a worsening rights situation across Central Asia, as he ended a visit to energy-rich Central Asia in ex-Soviet Turkmenistan.

Turkmenistan unveils gold statue of president

Ashgabat - The isolated Central Asian state of Turkmenistan on Monday unveiled a massive gold statue of President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov riding a horse in a move that echoes his predecessor's cult of personality.

Russia flexes Central Asia military might amid Afghan fears

- Russia has deployed hundreds of troops for drills in Central Asia with its ex-Soviet allies in a show of force as anxiety grows over a surge in fighting in neighbouring Afghanistan.

Turkmenistan pardons over 1,200 prisoners

Ashgabat - The gas-rich former Soviet state of Turkmenistan has pardoned more than 1,200 prisoners in an amnesty, state media reported Saturday, quoting strongman President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov.

Turkmenistan hopes 'Door to Hell' will boost tourism

- Locals call it the Door to Hell, a giant burning pit that has spit out angry flames for more than 40 years, casting a yellow-orange glow into the evening sky.

Philippine Azkals beat Turkmenistan 2-0 in AFC Challenge Cup

The Philippine Azkals earned a semi-final slot in the on-going AFC Challenge Cup tournament in Maldives after beating the highly-rated Turkmenistan National Football Team in Male, Maldives Saturday night.
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Turkmenistan Image

Crater as seen in the daylight.
Crater as seen in the daylight.
Stefen Krasowski
A dust storm over Turkmenistan
A dust storm over Turkmenistan
NASA Earth Observatory

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