Amid longstanding reports of food shortages, dozens of women held protest near Mary city 3 April; officials reportedly distributed bags of flour in effort to calm protesters. In official speech, President Berdymukhammedov same day referred to COVID-19 for first time publicly; urged cabinet to adopt action to alleviate its impact on economy and criticised several senior officials for mismanagement of food shortage situation. Central Bank 1 April banned withdrawal of cash in foreign currencies in response to concerns over falling global price of natural gas, while authorities in Darganata district (east) early April further reduced limits on daily cash withdrawals. Govt continued to claim it had not registered any COVID-19 cases and throughout month hosted mass public events. Media watchdog NGO Reporters Without Borders mid-April ranked Turkmenistan joint bottom in the world (with North Korea) in its annual review of press freedom.
The death of President Saparmurat Niyazov of Turkmenistan from heart failure was announced on 21 December 2006.
The cotton industry in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan contributes to political repression, economic stagnation, widespread poverty and environmental degradation.
Sapamurad Niyazov's Turkmenistan, one of the world's most repressive regimes, has not responded to quiet diplomacy, modifying a few policies only when faced with a threat of sanctions or other punitive action.
More international involvement is needed in all spheres of youth activity in Central Asia, where around half the population is under 30.
The Annual Meeting of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) commencing on 3 May 2003 is an opportunity to assess frankly and honestly the records of the governments of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
More than a decade after their independence, each of the Central Asian states is on its own particular path of political and economic development. While most have achieved at least partial integration within the international community, one stands out as an exception: the remote former Soviet republic of Turkmenistan, on the eastern shores of the Caspian Sea.
Originally published in Foreign Policy en español
Originally published in Les Echos
Originally published in EUobserver
Originally published in Caucaz.com