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Latest news from Turkmenistan

TURKMENISTAN: Seven mosques destroyed in one year, activists say

ANKARA, 5 Jan 2005 (IRIN) - Efforts to curtail religious freedom in the reclusive oil-rich state of Turkmenistan continue, with at least seven mosques demolished in 2004 alone, activists told IRIN on Wednesday. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: UNODC and UK government train customs officials

ANKARA, 15 Nov 2004 (IRIN) - A seminar to train Turkmen and Afghan customs officials on how to detect chemical precursors to help reduce drug trade in Central Asia is being held in the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, thanks to a joint initiative by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the UK government. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: Interview with US Ambassador Tracey Ann Jacobson

ANKARA, 11 Nov 2004 (IRIN) - In an interview with IRIN, US Ambassador to Turkmenistan Ann Jacobson offered her views on where the country is today and the many challenges it faces for the future, including areas of education, economic reform, human rights and the development of civil society. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: International benchmarks key to reform says report

ANKARA, 8 Nov 2004 (IRIN) - The International Crisis Group (ICG) has called for the adoption of specific benchmarks by the international community to bring about positive change in Turkmenistan, Central Asia's most reclusive state. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: Prison amnesty viewed as routine

ANKARA, 26 Oct 2004 (IRIN) - Activists have largely dismissed a proposed amnesty for thousands of prisoners incarcerated in Turkmenistan's overcrowded jails, describing the annual event as mere window dressing to disguise an otherwise abysmal human rights record. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: 140 refugees get third country resettlement in Canada

ANKARA, 14 Oct 2004 (IRIN) - Dozens of refugees in Turkmenistan, mainly Afghans and Azeris, are set to be resettled in Canada in the near future, according to the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Ashgabat. The Canadian government has accepted 140 refugees for resettlement, including 25 families from Azerbaijan, 22 families from Afghanistan, 17 families from Iran and one stateless person. They are expected to leave for Canada in the near future. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: No invitation for election monitors

ANKARA, 6 Oct 2004 (IRIN) - The Turkmen government has shown little interest in inviting any international observers to monitor the parliamentary elections scheduled for December. Rights activists have described the polls in the secretive country as mere window dressing. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: Heroin use poses a growing challenge

ASHGABAT, 5 Oct 2004 (IRIN) - Murat, not his real name, is steadily working the phone in search of something. At first glance, it is unclear why he appears so worried, but after listening to him speak on the phone, it is clear he is after his next hit of heroin. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: Prison conditions remain bleak

ANKARA, 30 Sep 2004 (IRIN) - Batyr Mukhamedov still vividly recalls his incarceration in Shagal prison in eastern Turkmenistan, where torture, routine beatings, food deprivation, overcrowding and disease have yet to receive the international concern they deserve, activists told IRIN. Full report

TURKMENISTAN: Concern over religious freedom continues

ANKARA, 21 Sep 2004 (IRIN) - Concern over the state of religious freedom in Turkmenistan persisted on Tuesday after a recent US State Department report failed to designate the reclusive Central Asian state a country of particular concern (CPC), much to the chagrin of the United States Commission on Religious Freedom (USCIRF). Full report


IRIN Focuses & Interviews for Turkmenistan

TURKMENISTAN: Interview with US Ambassador Tracey Ann Jacobson

TURKMENISTAN: Heroin use poses a growing challenge

TURKMENISTAN: Focus on Armenian migrants

TURKMENISTAN: Focus on education

TURKMENISTAN: Focus on the Russian minority


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