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Niyazov Says 'Foolish' Officials A Threat --> Turkmenistan's President Saparmurat Niyazov (RFE/RL) March 17, 2006 (RFE/RL) --  Turkmenistan's President Saparmurat Niyazov has warned his cabinet that "foolish" officials are a threat to the stability of the government in Ashgabat.

Niyazov made the remarks during a March 16 cabinet meeting that was broadcast across Turkmenistan by state-run television.

"Guys, don't allow any wrong doings in your work and departments," Niyazov said. "Remove foolish people, and search for intelligent people [to replace the foolish ones]. If we don’t do this, we will face misfortune sooner or later. If a foolish person comes [into authority], they could shake the foundations of our stable government."

Niyazov also praised China during the cabinet meeting, saying the country is "great" and "developed." He said Turkmenistan can learn from China's examples.

Niyazov is scheduled to lead a delegation of Turkmen officials to China on April 2.

(RFE/RL's Turkmen Service, Turkmen TV)

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Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov (right) meeting with Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko in Ashgabat in March 2005

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