Turkmen pilgrims who returned from the Hajj had to undergo a medical check-up

Turkmen pilgrims who returned from the Hajj had to undergo a medical check-up On 17 October, an hour before the arrival of the aircraft with the Turkmen pilgrims on board to Ashgabat, who were flying home from Mecca, the airport was cordoned off by the military personnel and police…

No dollars left

No dollars left Starting from 6 October the currency exchange offices in Ashgabat stopped selling US dollars. Rumours are circulating among the residents that the authorities intend to increase the US dollar exchange rate to the Turkmen manat. Currently…

Grand openings of incomplete construction projects

Grand openings of incomplete construction projects From 22-23 September G. Berdymukhamedov paid a working visit to Dashoguz velayat. Following a long-standing tradition in Turkmenistan, in the run-up to any visit by the President local executives make preparations to get various facilities commissioned.…

Turkmen-style fight against “the powers of darkness”

Turkmen-style fight against “the powers of darkness” Last week employees of the road security service launched another clampdown on cars with tinted glass. In Geok-tepe and Abadan (formerly, Bezmein, which is now a part of Ashgabat) police officers stopped cars that did not…

Clones

Clones “Shoot your past from the gun and the future will shoot you from the cannon” What is modern Turkmen art and Turkmen culture? They are servants of the authorities in the ideological “front line”. They are…

Comparing 3G rates offered by MTS and Altyn Asyr

Comparing 3G rates offered by MTS and Altyn Asyr On 1 October MTS-Turkmenistan launched the 3rd generation mobile network 3G. This launch can hardly be referred to as timely since the whole world, or at least developed countries, has already been switching to the new…

Kurban-bayram (Eid al-Adha) festival in Turkmenistan

Kurban-bayram (Eid al-Adha) festival in Turkmenistan Celebrations of Kurban-bayram (the Islamic festival of sacrificial offering) is underway in Turkmenistan.  Despite the Muslim origin of the festival, see-saws have been installed in many cities across the country – this tradition has nothing to…

Gazprom, a new competitor to Turkmenistan in China?

Gazprom, a new competitor to Turkmenistan in China? History was made on the 21st May over the gas deal between Russia and China, and not simply because of the amount of money written into the contract: 400 Bn dollars, to deliver 38 bcm/y over…

Red lines become redder

Red lines become redder Régis Genté For Turkmenistan, the Ukrainian crisis won’t change fundamentally its relations with Russia. But Ashgabat will probably be even more careful to not anger the Russian bear Turkmenistan is not at the center of Russian…

What will 2014 be like for Turkmenistan? Four experts’ view on regional geopolitics

What will 2014 be like for Turkmenistan? Four experts’ view on regional geopolitics Régis Genté In an effort to bring new voices to give their opinion and expertise, we have asked four specialists of Central Asia to tell us what 2014could be like for Turkmenistan. Here is some verbatim.…

Is Russia Abandoning Turkmenistan?

Is Russia Abandoning Turkmenistan? We asked four well known Russian specialists on Central Asia to answer the following question: Is Russia abandoning Turkmenistan? Many observers of the region (including diplomats, experts, businessmen…) have the impression that Russia indeed will no…

Turkmenistan on the (rail) way to global integration

Turkmenistan on the (rail) way to global integration Two railways projects are under construction in Turkmenistan. They could contribute to integrate the country regionally and worldwide… if the government opens to the world The third decade of independence of the Central Asia Republics could…

TAPI, a pipe dream but…

TAPI, a pipe dream but… Régis Genté Never say never. This is what energy experts usually advise when it comes to pipeline projects. This is especially true when it comes to the former Soviet Union. Everyone remembers how for example the…

Generation “Ch”

Generation “Ch” Letter four. From the series “Letters which are unlikely to be read but need to be written” What generation is being raised in the epoch of power and happiness? What problems are the authorities creating for…

Caspian Sea Could Be Key To Russian Control Of Eurasian Energy Markets

The world’s favorite hotbed of instability, the Caspian Sea, has finally earned the right to be called, well… a sea. This is the unexpected epiphany of the September 29th Caspian Sea Summit that brought together the…

Turkmenistan’s New Afghan Border Policy

Turkmenistan’s government is clarifying its policy toward its border with Afghanistan and now seems to be adopting the same tactic as neighbors Uzbekistan and Tajikistan — that is, sealing the frontier. RFE/RL’s Turkmen Service — known locally…

After Summit, Caspian Sea Questions Linger

Presidents of the five countries surrounding the Caspian Sea held a summit last week in Astrakhan, on the Russian shore of the sea. And while the Russian hosts declared that the summit moved the Caspian countries…

Arbitration Reveals How Turkmenistan Plays Chicken with Investors

A German national’s successful lawsuit against Turkmenistan’s government after Ashgabat expropriated his poultry farm offers insight into some of the unusual tricks the isolated Central Asian country can hatch on investors. The Washington D.C.-based International Center…

TAPI gas pipeline: top US firms drop out of race

Top US energy companies – Chevron and ExxonMobil – have dropped out of the race to become a consortium leader in financing the Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India (TAPI) gas pipeline following dismissal of their demand…

A New U.S. Human Rights Policy Towards Turkmenistan

Recently, the State Department announced a potentially significant change in U.S. policy towards Turkmenistan when it was designated a “country of particular concern” (CPC) for particularly severe violations of religious freedom. The move came as a…

Turkmen-Afghans confront Taliban on their own

Ethnic Turkmens in Afghanistan continue to battle Taliban units that have made an unwelcome appearance near the Afghan-Turkmen border. On the night of August 25-26, a three-hour gun battle ended with an anti-Taliban militia forcing the…