Niyazov commemoration services no longer welcome in Turkmenistan

ASHGABAT (TCA) — The first Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov can now be commemorated only at the official event in Ashgabat according to a decision made at a closed meeting of high-ranking government officials last week, Chronicles of Turkmenistan reported.

The meeting brought together representatives of the Presidential executive office, Deputy Prime Ministers, and the speaker of the Parliament.

On the same day, Turkmen government authorities informed representatives of the Khalk Maslakhaty (People’s Council), Parliament members, and executives of large businesses that the commemoration services for Niyazov are no longer welcome and that the flower-laying ceremony at Niyazov’s monument was scheduled to be held on 21 December 2019 only in Ashgabat.

That day commemoration services for Niyazov were previously organized by executives of companies, including NGOs, in all provinces of the country.

This year, the commemoration service for Niyazov did take place in Ashgabat, but the state information agency TDH reported that President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov was not in attendance. The footage of the state television on 21 December featured the flower laying ceremony at the monument of Niyazov which was held on the Commemoration Day in October. On Sunday, 22 December 2019, the flower laying ceremony was not mentioned in the final news program which reviews the most important events of the past week.

Berdymukhammedov has been Turkmenistan’s leader after Niyazov’s death on 21 December 2006.

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Times of Central Asia