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Tajik President Fires Energy Companies Chiefs

Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon often shuffles officials at the annual cabinet meeting.
DUSHANBE -- Tajik President Emomali Rahmon has fired the heads of Tajikistan's state electricity and natural-gas companies for "failing" to do their jobs, RFE/RL's Tajik Service reports.

Barqi Tojik head Sharifkhon Samiev and Tojikgaz chief Fathiddin Muhsiddinov were dramatically fired by Rahmon during an annual cabinet meeting shown on national television.

Tajikistan experienced an extremely cold winter and severe energy shortages last year that left many people in cold, dark homes and others unable to attend school or go to work.

At the time, Rahmon gave Samiev and Muhsiddinov six months to resolve the problem for this winter. But energy shortages continue.

Rahmon often reshuffles his cabinet during annual government meetings. No replacements were named.