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  For Democracy and Human Rights in Turkmenistan
Whats up, Arkadag?


Succession, rampant inflation, and the dear leader gets some exotic new pets. This and more in our weekly briefing.

Turkmenistan is playing host to many important regional guests these days. Whats up?

On April 29, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev traveled to Ashgabat for no obviously urgent purpose. An Uzbek government press release on the visit focused mainly on the informal niceties, such as Mirziyoyev expressing his condolences on the recent passing of President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedovs 89-year-old father, Malikguly.

The Uzbek leader then congratulated Berdymukhamedov with his recent installation as chairman of the newly formed Senate a position that a president >>

Dog and pony show


While the president and his son indulge their favorite pets, food for people is increasingly scarce. Our weekly Turkmenistan briefing.

Following the death of his father earlier this month, President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov disappeared from public view for some days.

In his absence, the spotlight of state media was turned instead on his son and apparent successor-appointee, Serdar.

Although Serdar has been given a number of important new jobs recently, nothing has consumed as much of his attention of late as dogs and horses. On April 21, the first day of his fathers absence, he oversaw the opening ceremony of the new joint premises for the International Association of Akhal-Teke Horse Breeding >>

Turkmenistan: My kingdom for a horse association


Legacy and death must linger perennially even in the minds of the most megalomaniacal autocrats, and this is why preparations for Turkmenistans future are proceeding apace. Photo: 4 generations of the Berdymukhamedovs, 2012.

Turkmenistans leader was given a sharp reminder of his mortality this week with the death of his 89-year-old father, Malikguly Berdymukhamedov.

In spite of the cult of personality being erected around his son, the older Berdymukhamedov enjoyed relatively limited exposure in life. The encomiums have been accordingly modest.

State media has nonetheless felt required to memorialize the late pater familias by endowing him with idealized qualities and describing him, for example, as an unparalleled paragon of high humanism and a man whose life became a salutary example >>

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