President of Turkmenistan

Turkmenistan

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Politics of Turkmenistan


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The politics of Turkmenistan takes place in the framework of an presidential republic, whereby the President of Turkmenistan is both head of state and head of government. Turkmenistan has a single-party system.

Political background

After 69 years as part of the Soviet Union (including 67 years as a union republic), Turkmenistan declared its independence on October 27, 1991.

President for Life Saparmurat Niyazov, a former bureaucrat of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, ruled Turkmenistan from 1985, when he became head of the Communist Party of the Turkmen SSR, until his death in 2006. He retained absolute control over the country after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. On December 28, 1999, Niyazov was declared President for Life of Turkmenistan by the Mejlis (parliament), which itself had taken office only a week earlier in elections that included only candidates hand-picked by President Niyazov; no opposition candidates were allowed.

The former Communist Party, now known as the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan, is the only one legally permitted. Political gatherings are illegal unless government sanctioned.

All citizens are required to carry internal passports, noting place of residence--a practice carried over from the Soviet era. Movement into and out of the country, as well as within its borders, is difficult. Turkmenistan is dominated by a pervasive cult of personality extolling the late president as Türkmenbaşy ("Leader of all Turkmen"), a title he assumed in 1993. His face adorns many everyday objects, from banknotes to bottles of vodka. The logo of Turkmen national television is his profile. The two books he has written are mandatory readings in schools and public servants are quizzed yearly about their knowledge of their contents. It is also common in shops and homes. Many institutions are named after his mother. All watches and clocks made must bear his portrait printed on the dial-face. A giant 15-meter (50 ft) tall gold-plated statue of him stands on a rotating pedestal in Ashgabat, so it will always face into the sun and shine light onto the city.

A slogan popular in Turkmen propaganda is "Halk! Watan! Türkmenbashi!" ("People! Motherland! Leader!") Niyazov renamed the days of the week after members of his family and wrote the new Turkmen national anthem/oath himself.

Foreign companies seeking to exploit Turkmenistan's vast natural gas resources cooperated with Niyazov since he also controlled access to the natural resources. His book, Ruhnama (or Rukhnama), which is revered in Turkmenistan almost like a holy text, has been translated into 32 languages and distributed for free among major international libraries[1]. Niyazov once proclaimed that anyone who reads this book three times will "become more intelligent, will recognise the divine being and will go straight to heaven"[2]. It is, as yet, unknown how his death will affect this.

After Niyazov's death, deputy prime minister Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow was named acting president, and was elected president in his own right on 11 February 2007 in elections condemned by international observers as fraudulent. On March 20, in a decision of significant symbolical weight in the ongoing rejection of Niyazov's personality cult, he abolished the power of the president to rename any landmarks, institutions, or cities. [6]

The constitution provides for freedom of the press, but the government does not practice it. The government controls all media outlets. Only two newspapers, Adalat and Galkynysh, are nominally independent, but they were created by presidential decree. Cable TV, which had existed in the late 1980s, was shut down.

Activities of all but the officially recognized Russian Orthodox and Sunni Muslim faiths are severely limited. Religious congregations are required to register with the government, and individual parishes must have at least 500 members to register. Severe measures are directed toward religious sects that have not been able to establish official ties of state recognition, especially Baptists, Pentecostals, Seventh-day Adventists, Hare Krishna, Jehovah's Witnesses, and Bahá'ís. Practitioners of these sects have allegedly been harassed, imprisoned, and/or tortured, according to some outside human rights advocacy groups.

Corruption continues to be pervasive. Power is concentrated in the president; the judiciary is wholly subservient to the regime, with all judges appointed for 5-year terms by the president without legislative review. Little has been done to prosecute corrupt officials.

Turkmenistan's "status of permanent neutrality" was accepted by the UN General Assembly on December 12, 1995.

Executive branch

Presidents Term of Office
Saparmurat Niyazov27 October 199021 December 2006
Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow21 December 2006 - present (acting until 14 February 2007)
Under the 1992 constitution, the president is elected by popular vote for a five-year term. Niyazov added the post of chairman of the Supreme Soviet in January 1990, and was elected as the country's first president that October. He was the only candidate in Turkmenistan's first presidential elections in 1992. A 1994 plebiscite extended his term to 2002, and Parliament extended his term indefinitely in 1999.

After the death of Niyazov, Deputy Prime Minister Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow took over, despite the fact that Öwezgeldi Ataıew, the Chairman of the Parliament of Turkmenistan, would be the next in line in the order of succession (allegedly because the prosecutor-general had initiated investigations against Ataıew). The president appoints the deputy chairmen of the cabinet of ministers.

A presidential election to replace Niyazov was held on February 11, 2007.

Legislative branch

Under the 1992 constitution, there are two parliamentary bodies, a unicameral People's Council or Halk Maslahaty (supreme legislative body of up to 2,500 delegates, some of whom are elected by popular vote and some of whom are appointed; meets at least yearly) and a unicameral Assembly or Mejlis (50 seats (scheduled to be increased to 65); members are elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms).

Elections: People's Council - last held in April 2003 (next to be held December 2008); Mejlis - last held 19 December 2004 (next to be held December 2008). Election results: Mejlis - DPT 100%; seats by party - DPT 50; note - all 50 elected officials are members of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan and are preapproved by President Niyazov.

Note: in late 2003, a new law was adopted, reducing the powers of the Mejlis and making the Halk Maslahaty the supreme legislative organ; the Halk Maslahaty can now legally dissolve the Mejlis, and the president is now able to participate in the Mejlis as its supreme leader; the Mejlis can no longer adopt or amend the constitution, or announce referendums or its elections; since the president is both the "Chairman for Life" of the Halk Maslahaty and the supreme leader of the Mejlis, the 2003 law has the effect of making him the sole authority of both the executive and legislative branches of government.

Political parties and elections

For other political parties see Democratic Party of Turkmenistan. An overview on elections and election results is included in Elections in Turkmenistan.
discussedit
'''Summary of the 11 February 2007 Turkmenistan presidential Turkmenistani presidential election, 2007>Election results
Candidates Votes %
Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedow2,357,12089.23
Amanaz Atajykow85,0163.23
Işanguly Nuryew62,8302.38
Muhammetnazar Gurbanow62,6722.37
Orazmyrat Garajaew40,8211.55
Aşyrnyaz Pomanow34,7331.31
Total (turnout 95 %)  
Source: [3]
discussedit
'''Summary of the 19 December 2004 Mejlis of Turkmenistan Elections in Turkmenistan>election results
Party Seats
Democratic Party of Turkmenistan50
Total (turnout 76.9 %)50
discussedit
'''Summary of the 7 April 2003 People's Council of Turkmenistan Elections in Turkmenistan>election results
Party Seats
Democratic Party of Turkmenistan2507
Total (turnout 65 %)2507


Turkmenistan is a single-party state. Only one political party is legally allowed to hold effective power – the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan(Türkmenistanyň Demokratik partiıasynyň).

There have been political parties and opposition groups in the past – a group named Agzybirlik (Unity) was banned in January 1990. Its members formed the Party for Democratic Development which was itself banned in 1991. This led a coalition for democratic reform named Gengesh (Conference).

The latest opposition party operates in exile and is named The Republican Party of Turkmenistan(Türkmenistanyň Respublikan partiıasynyň). Since all opposition is banned within Turkmenistan, it was forced to form and operate from abroad.

Administrative divisions

Turkmenistan is divided into 5 provinces welayatlar (singular - welayat): Ahal Province (Aşgabat), Balkan Province (Balkanabat, formerly Nebitdag), Daşoguz Province (formerly Tashauz), Lebap Province (Turkmenabat), Mary Province

Foreign policy

Foreign policy of Turkmenistan is based on the status of permanent positive neutrality recognized by the UN General Assembly Resolution on Permanent Neutrality of Turkmenistan on 12 December, 1995. Articles on Turkmenistan's foreign policy as a neutral state:

International organization participation

Turkmenistan is affiliated to the CIS, EAPC, EBRD, ECE, ECO, ESCAP, FAO, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDB, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), IOC, IOM (observer), ISO (correspondent), ITU, NAM, OIC, OPCW, OSCE, PFP, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (observer)

See also

External links

Anthem
Independent, Neutral, Turkmenistan State Anthem


Capital Ashgabat

Largest city Ashgabat
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Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
The Democratic Party of Turkmenistan(Türkmenistanyň Demokratik partiıasynyň) is the only political party in Turkmenistan. It was led by Saparmurat Niyazov until his death in 2006. Before 1991 the party was called the Communist Party of the Turkmen SSR.
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Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan's declaration of "permanent neutrality" was formally recognized by the United Nations in 1995. Although the Government of Turkmenistan claims to favour trade with and export to the United States and Turkey, it has significant commercial relationships with Russia and Iran and
..... Click the link for more information.
Turkmenistan

This article is part of the series:
Politics of Turkmenistan


  • Constitution
  • President
  • Gurbanguly
    Berdimuhammedow
  • Assembly
  • People's Council
  • Military of Turkmenistan
  • :(incl.

..... Click the link for more information.


Information on politics by country is available for every country, including both de jure and de facto independent states, inhabited dependent territories, as well as areas of special sovereignty.
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A presidential system, also called a congressional system, is a system of government where an executive branch exists and presides (hence the term) separately from the legislature, to which it is not accountable and which cannot in normal circumstances dismiss it.
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republic, for all other uses see: republic (disambiguation)

List of forms of government
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Direct democracy

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Head of state or Chief of state is the generic term for the individual or collective office that serves as the chief public representative of a monarchic or republican nation-state, federation,
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Head of Government is the chief officer of the executive branch of a government, often presiding over a cabinet. In a parliamentary system, the head of government is often styled Prime Minister, Premier, etc.
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Anthem
Independent, Neutral, Turkmenistan State Anthem


Capital Ashgabat

Largest city Ashgabat
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single-party state or one-party system or single-party system is a type of party system government in which a single political party forms the government and no other parties are permitted to run candidates for election.
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Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (abbreviated USSR, Russian: ; tr.
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October 27th is the feast day of the following Roman Catholic Saints:
  • Abban of Magheranoidhe
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    President for Life is a title assumed by some dictators to remove their term limit, in the hope that their authority, legitimacy, and term will never be disputed.

    The first well-known incident of a leader extending his term indefinitely was Roman dictator Julius Caesar, who
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    Saparmyrat Ataıewiç Nyıazow [θɑːpɑːrmɯːrɑːt niːjɑːğɒv
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    Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Russian: Коммунисти́ческая Па́ртия
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    The Communist Party of the Turkmenistan was the ruling communist party of the Turkmen SSR, and a part of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. From 1985 it was led by Saparmurat Niyazov, who in 1991 renamed the party to the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan, which is no longer a
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    December 28 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

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