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Turkmen Foreign Ministry Complains About Russian Media --> Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin (file photo) (ITAR-TASS) December 29, 2006 -- Turkmenistan's Foreign Ministry has released a statement complaining about "false statements" in Russian media from "certain so-called political analysts" concerning n alleged  coup in Turkmenistan following the death of President Saparmurat Niyazov earlier this month.

The statement was issued on December 28.

"There have been slanderous statements and articles written by certain so-called political analysts in the Russian media about a coup and an illegitimate transfer of power that allegedly took place in Turkmenistan," Turkmen Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov said on state television on December 28. "All of those insinuations are aimed at giving the world community a false impression of the real situation and events in Turkmenistan. In this respect, the Turkmen Foreign Ministry is authorized to declare that the said statements have absolutely nothing to do with reality."

"Turkmenistan is a rich and stable state that has achieved tremendous successes in the years of independence, having in practice secured political, economic and food security," Meredov continued. "Therefore, we declare that no provocations, no matter who perpetrates them, can deter us from the steadfast course of development and the democratic processes set forth by the great President Saparmurat Turkmenbashi."

Turkmen Ambassador to Russia Khalnazar Agakhanov also raised the issue with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin the same day.

"Such publications reflect only the opinion of certain reporters and don't reflect the official position of the Russian leadership," Karasin responded.

(, ITAR-TASS, Interfax)

Saparmurat Niyazov, 1940-2006

Turkment President Saparmurat Niyazov (

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RFE/RL's coverage of Turkmenistan.