Turkmenistan. At the beginning of the year, the opposition’s political pressure against the regime continued. Turkmenistan’s ambassador to Turkey, Nurmuhammet Hanamov, stated that he stood on the opposition’s side, which led to his dismissal by President Nijazov. Shortly thereafter, the country’s former governor also joined the opposition, claiming that the economic situation in Turkmenistan was critical.
According to Countryaah website, national day of Turkmenistan is every September 27. Speculation about plans for a coup against Nijazov took off in the spring, since the president dismissed both the defense minister and the head of the security police. The two were forced to make humiliating confessions of failure in their tasks, and according to Nijazov, corruption and other criminal activities were behind. Nijazov appointed substitutes who were loyal to him, but who were not as well qualified for his posts. The fired security chief Muhammed Nazarov, considered the country’s second most powerful man, was singled out in foreign press as a possible initiator of a coup attempt against Nijazov.
The president’s hardships increased when international media accused him of participating in drug smuggling originating in the Afghan opium culture. The data fueled the opposition’s campaign against Nijazov. Former Foreign Minister Boris Sjichmuradov, who led the opposition in exile from Moscow, said that Nijazov should be investigated before an international court. Turkmenist oppositionists met in exile during the summer and agreed on a political plan for, among other things. free and fair elections, freedom of speech and assembly, as well as the release of political prisoners. In August, the National Democratic Movement conducted a series of demonstrations at home, in the capital Ashgabat.
President Nijazov decided in August to rename the months and days of the year. January is henceforth called “Turkmenbasji”, one of Nijazov’s titles, while April is named after the president’s deceased mother. Nijazov also redefined man’s age, explaining that adolescence lasts until you are 37 years old.
Hundreds of people were arrested following an attack on Nijazov in November. One of them was Boris Sjichmuradov, who was allegedly voluntarily returned from exile. He was sentenced to life imprisonment after publicly pleading guilty. Critics said that Sjichmuradov had been pressed and that the attack was actually arranged by Nijazov himself.
Turkmenistan Country Overview
Finnish citizens need a visa when traveling to Turkmenistan. A visa costs $ 85 and registration costs $ 14.
- According to ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG, TKM stands for Turkmenistan.
Every person participating in the trip must have a valid travel insurance that covers medical expenses in the event of illness or other similar need. Please check the validity of your own insurance and the terms and conditions of the insurance cancellation cover.
Please pay attention to the special nature of your trip and check the coverage of the insurance in that respect as well. In many locations, the insurance must also be valid when moving at an altitude of more than 3,000 meters, in which case it also covers mountain sickness.
Many hiking or diving trips require more extensive insurance, which covers, for example, diving or moving on a glacier. Please check the contents of your insurance with your insurance company.
It is a good idea to check that the basic vaccinations are valid for the trip. Check vaccination requirements at your health center or
Currency The currency of
Turkmenistan is the manat (TMT), which is divided into 100 tennes. Please bring the money you need in cash in US dollars or manatees, as the cards cannot be used almost anywhere.
The time difference between Turkmenistan and Finland is +3 hours in winter and +2 hours in summer.
Electric current The electric current in
Turkmenistan is 220 V (50Hz). An adapter is not required for Finnish devices.
The re-edition of the Central Asian ‘Great Game’
‘Big game’ is the definition traditionally attributed by historians to the competition between the British and Russian empires in the nineteenth century for control of the Central Asian region and the Indian subcontinent. In the context of the post-bipolar regional context, a growing number of analysts have taken this name to indicate the competition between Russia and the United States for influence on the southern space of the former Soviet Union, from the Caucasus to Central Asia. The objective and at the same time instrument of the re-edition of the Great Game would be the exploitation and transport of the huge, and largely unexplored, energy resources of an area that remained, until 1991, economically and politically isolated from the international community. As undeniable as it is, especially in the second half of the nineties, Russia and the United States were the protagonists of a fierce regional competition, reducing the dynamics in the area to a Russian-American competition appears misleading. The geopolitical dynamics intertwined in the area in the aftermath of the Soviet dissolution present characteristics that are extremely more complex than those of the nineteenth century, both from a qualitative point of view, due to the variety of political, military and economic scenarios, and from a purely quantitative point of view. In addition to the two countries already mentioned, other and relevant players are also involved in the area, from Turkey to Iran, from the European Union to China, each with their own motivations – geostrategic, energy, security – and with their own approaches – economic, cultural, religious.
The legacy of ‘Turkmenbashi’
Already at the head of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Turkmenistan since 1985, Saparmurat Niyazov was elected president of the new republic in June 1992 with 99.9% of the votes. Thanks to a similar plebiscitary consensus, in January 1994 his five-year presidential term was extended until 2002, and then he was freed from any deadline in December 1999, when the parliament entrusted him with the presidency for life. Faced with the need to re-establish the institutional order and the Turkmen national identity after the collapse of the USSR – partly unexpected and certainly not desired – Niyazov canceled the albeit marginal reforms introduced in the Gorbachev era, imposing a system of Neostalinist mold based on a deep cult of personality and characterized by a high degree of authoritarianism and arbitrariness. The strong centralization of power in the presidential office was accompanied; last to the introduction of a textbook (‘Ruhnama’) in all levels of education which – written by Turkmenbashi himself and about history, mythology and philosophy – represents a spiritual guide for the people. The well-established machine of consent bequeathed to the current President Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov has not been dismantled. Marginalized the circles of power and officials closest to Turkmenbashi, Ber; dimuhammedov has progressively re-founded the cult of the personality of the nation’s leader, establishing his own.