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Flash Analysis: President Berdymukhammedov At 3

RFE/RL's Turkmen Service Director Oguljamal Yazliyeva points out one of the major obstacles to shedding the "cult of personality" around Turkmenistan's leader.

The current head of state, President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov, was anointed leader within days of the sudden death in late 2006 of iconic leader Saparmurat Niyazov, known simply as "Turkmenbashi." He won the subsequent election and was inaugurated three years ago today, on February 11, 2007, pledging reform and a break with the country's megalomaniacal past.

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at