Election under way in Turkmenistan

ASHBAGAT, Turkmenistan, Feb. 12 (UPI) -- Voters in the central Asian republic of Turkmenistan went to the polls Sunday to elect a new president in their single-party political system.

OSCE, Turkmens discuss press freedom

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan, Nov. 17 (UPI) -- The press freedom chief of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe says she's encouraged after holding talks with Turkmenistan leaders.

Turkmen Caspian oil sector opens to foreign firms

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- Turkmenistan, long slow to respond to foreign efforts to enter its energy sector, is now considering tenders for development of its Caspian offshore hydrocarbon deposits.

Analysis: China awarded massive Turkmen gas contract

WASHINGTON, June 8 (UPI) -- Since the unexpected death on Dec. 21, 2006, of Turkmenistan’s “President for life,” “Turkmenbashi (“father of the Turkmen”) Saparmurat Niyazov, Russia, the U.S. and China have been engaged in a fierce covert struggle to win dominance over Turkmenistan’s vast but largely untapped gas deposits. Two and a half years later, after offers and counter-offers, Beijing appears to have the inside track, a decision by Niyazov’s successor, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, that will cause much hand-wringing in both Moscow and Washington, which awarded China a $3 billion contract for its massive South Iolatan gas field.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Pipeline explosion reveals Turkmenistan-Gazprom rift

WASHINGTON, April 13 (UPI) -- In the intense international competition for Caspian hydrocarbons that developed after the 1991 collapse of communism, Western interest focused initially on Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Turkmenistan was regarded largely as a closed market because of the mercurial policies of its president for life, "Turkmenbashi" or "father of the Turkmen," Saparmurat Niyazov. Then as now, Gazprom took the lion's share of Turkmen gas, but a recent mysterious explosion has revealed significant rifts between Turkmenistan and its largest foreign customer.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

No slaying Dragon in Turkmen oil and gas despite economy

WASHINGTON, Feb. 13 (UPI) -- The deepening global recession is pounding energy companies, as oil prices continue on a downward slope. While the world's largest companies are slowing their spending, a number of smaller companies are actually prospering. One of the most prosperous smaller concerns, Dragon Oil, is finding its wealth in one of the most unlikely of energy "new frontiers" -- Turkmenistan's offshore Caspian waters.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Turkmenistan adopts new constitution

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Lawmakers in the central Asian country of Turkmenistan have unanimously adopted a new constitution, officials said.

Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan improve relations

WASHINGTON, May 22 (UPI) -- For the last 17 months Russia and China have been engaged in a three-way tussle with Western energy companies to develop Turkmenistan's vast natural gas resources.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Analysis: TAP pipeline reality or romance?

WASHINGTON, May 6 (UPI) -- TAP's promises of riches trump geography and politics as it would pass through some of the world's most forbidding places en route to India.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent
Analysis: Turkmenistan opens up

Analysis: Turkmenistan opens up

WASHINGTON, April 28 (UPI) -- Of all the post-Soviet Caspian nations, Western investors since 1991 looked most longingly at Turkmenistan, which was essentially unavailable during the reign of Saparmurat Niyazov.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Analysis: S. Korea eyes C. Asia energy

WASHINGTON, April 4 (UPI) -- Record-high energy prices have provoked a global scramble among nations dependent on energy imports to lock in their requirements, in Asia none more so than China and Japan, the world's second- and third-largest oil importers, with daily imports of an estimated 7 million and 5.4 million barrels per day respectively.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Analysis: U.K. firm to audit Turkmen gas

WASHINGTON, March 28 (UPI) -- Since the death in December 2005 of Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov, Western energy firms have longingly eyed Turkmenistan's vast natural gas reserves, which even during the Soviet era were estimated at 10 trillion to 14 trillion cubic meters, exceeded only by those of the Russian Federation. Among the potential suitors for Ashgabat's favor, no firms were more ardent than U.S. companies. Alas, once again for Washington, the groom has been left at the altar.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent
Analysis: Iran and Turkmen gas

Analysis: Iran and Turkmen gas

Since the death of Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov in December 2006, foreign companies have been falling over themselves to acquire a piece of the country's vast natural gas reserves, estimated during the Soviet era to be between 10 trillion and 14 trillion cubic meters.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Analysis: Turkmenistan, Russia and China

The most fascinating energy development of the last 14 months has been the furious, if covert, struggle involving Russia, China and the United States to develop Turkmenistan's vast natural gas deposits since the death of Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov in December 2006.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent

Analysis: Petronas makes Uzbek strides

WASHINGTON, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- In the mad Western dash for Central Asian energy resources, investors initially focused on Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Following the death of Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov in December 2006, Western energy firms fell over themselves courting Turkmenistan's new president, Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov. Ten years before Niyazov's death, however, Malaysia's Petronas won Turkmenistan's first offshore drilling agreement and began prospecting in the Turkmen sector of the Caspian.
JOHN C.K. DALY, UPI International Correspondent
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Saparmurat Niyazov
The main gold-plated monument of former Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov stands in front of the Niyazov's museum on a central square in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on May 11, 2007. (UPI Photo/Anatoli Zhdanov)

Saparmyrat Ataýewiç Nyýazow (pronounced ) (Russian : Сапармурат Атаевич Ниязов) (19 February 1940  – 21 December 2006) was a Turkmen politician who served as President (later President for Life) of Turkmenistan from 2 November 1990 until his death in 2006. He was First Secretary of the Turkmen Communist Party from 1985 until 1991 and continued to lead Turkmenistan for 15 years after independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. He was known in English as Saparmurat Atayevich Niyazov, the romanization of the Russian spelling Сапармурат Атаевич Ниязов of his Turkmen name.

Turkmen media referred to him using the title "His Excellency Saparmurat Türkmenbaşy, President of Turkmenistan and Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers". His self-given title Türkmenbaşy, or Turkmenbashi (pronounced ), meaning Leader of Turkmens, referred to his position as the founder and president of the Association of Turkmens of the World.

Foreign media criticized him as one of the world's most totalitarian and repressive dictators, highlighting his reputation of imposing his personal eccentricities upon the country, which extended to renaming months after members of his family, and recoining the Turkmen word for bread by the name of his mother. Global Witness, a London-based human rights organization, reported that money under Niyazov's control and held overseas may be in excess of US$3 billion, of which $2 billion is supposedly situated in the Foreign Exchange Reserve Fund at Deutsche Bank in Germany.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Saparmurat Niyazov."
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