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New Turkmen Satellite Channel Launched

5 October 2004 -- Turkmen state television reported today that a new Turkmen satellite television channel offering programs in six foreign languages went on air today.

Channel TV-4 broadcasts news, entertainment, and movies in English, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, French, and Persian.

Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov said last February as he announced the creation of the channel that its purpose is to promote Turkmenistan's image abroad.

International organizations promoting democratic rights and freedom of speech have criticized the Turkmen government for abuses since the country became independent in 1991.

President Niyazov said his country is misunderstood and the channel is one attempt to show the many wonderful things happening in Turkmenistan today.