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Turkmen Leader Sacks Officials Over Corruption

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov has sacked several senior officials over corruption and "serious shortcomings."

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov has dismissed several senior cabinet members, including officials in charge of economic affairs, citing corruption and "serious shortcomings," state media reported on July 10.

During a cabinet meeting on July 9, Berdymukhammedov fired the economy and development minister, a deputy premier overseeing the economic and finance sector, and a deputy premier in charge of agriculture among others.

The autocratic leader, who wields sweeping powers, said key ministries had failed to assess the impact of the global crisis on Turkmenistan's economy.

Berdymukhammedov said "cases of bribery are not infrequent" in the country's economic and finance sector.

"In the latest period, 80 banking, tax and financial services workers have been charged with committing various crimes, according to the leader of the nation," state TV said.

The highly reclusive nation holds the world's fourth-largest reserves of natural gas.

The International Monetary Fund expects Turkmenistan's economic growth to decline to 9.0 percent this year from 10.3 percent in 2014 on the back of declining natural gas export revenues and lower public investment as a share of GDP.

Based on reporting by Reuters,, and