48 Facts About Turkmenistan


Turkmenistan is one of the most sparsely populated nations in Asia.

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In 1925, Turkmenistan became a constituent republic of the Soviet Union, the Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic; it became independent after the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991.

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Turkmenistan possesses the world's fifth largest reserves of natural gas.

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Turkmenistan is currently an observer state in the Organisation of Turkic States, the Turksoy community and a member of the United Nations.

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Name of Turkmenistan can be divided into two components: the ethnonym Turkmen and the Persian suffix -stan meaning "place of" or "country".

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Muslim chroniclers like Ibn Kathir suggested that the etymology of Turkmenistan came from the words Turk and Iman in reference to a massive conversion to Islam of two hundred thousand households in the year 971.

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Turkmenistan declared its independence from the Soviet Union after the independence referendum in 1991.

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Turkmenistan'storically inhabited by the Indo-Iranians, the written history of Turkmenistan begins with its annexation by the Achaemenid Empire of Ancient Iran.

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However, in 1881, the last significant resistance in Turkmen territory was crushed at the Battle of Geok Tepe, and shortly thereafter Turkmenistan was annexed, together with adjoining Uzbek territory, into the Russian Empire.

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However, in 1990, the Supreme Soviet of Turkmenistan declared sovereignty as a nationalist response to perceived exploitation by Moscow.

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Turkmenistan offered limited support to the military campaign against the Taliban following the 11 September 2001 attacks.

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Turkmenistan retained absolute control over the country as President after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.

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Since the December 2006 death of Niyazov, Turkmenistan's leadership has made tentative moves to open up the country.

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Politics of Turkmenistan take place in the framework of a presidential republic, with the President both head of state and head of government.

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Under Niyazov, Turkmenistan had a one-party system; however, in September 2008, the People's Council unanimously passed a resolution adopting a new Constitution.

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Turkmenistan was a one-party state from 1991 to 2012; however, the 2013 elections were widely seen as mere window dressing.

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In September 2020 the Turkmenistan Parliament adopted a constitutional amendment creating an upper chamber and thus making the Parliament bicameral.

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Illegal adoption of abandoned babies in Turkmenistan is blamed on rampant corruption in the agencies involved in the legal adoption process which pushes some parents to a "cheaper and faster" option.

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Many national laws of Turkmenistan have been published online on the Ministry of Justice website.

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Former President Saparmurat Niyazov stated that the neutrality would prevent Turkmenistan from participating in multi-national defense organizations, but allows military assistance.

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Turkmenistan has diplomatic relations with 139 countries, some of the most important allies being Afghanistan, Armenia, Iran, Pakistan and Russia.

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Turkmenistan is a member of the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Economic Cooperation Organization, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Islamic Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Food and Agriculture Organization, International Organization of Turkic Culture and observer member of Organisation of Turkic States.

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Turkmenistan has been widely criticised for human rights abuses and has imposed severe restrictions on foreign travel for its citizens.

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Topographically, Turkmenistan is bounded by the Ustyurt Plateau to the north, the Kopet Dag Range to the south, the Paropamyz Plateau, the Koytendag Range to the east, the Amu Darya Valley, and the Caspian Sea to the west.

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Turkmenistan includes three tectonic regions, the Epigersin platform region, the Alpine shrinkage region, and the Epiplatform orogenesis region.

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Turkmenistan is in a temperate desert zone with a dry continental climate.

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Remote from the open sea, with mountain ranges to the south and southeast, Turkmenistan's climate is characterized by low precipitation, low cloudiness, and high evaporation.

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Turkmenistan contains seven terrestrial ecoregions: Alai-Western Tian Shan steppe, Kopet Dag woodlands and forest steppe, Badghyz and Karabil semi-desert, Caspian lowland desert, Central Asian riparian woodlands, Central Asian southern desert, and Kopet Dag semi-desert.

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Turkmenistan is divided into five provinces or welayatlar and one capital city district.

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Turkmenistan has taken a cautious approach to economic reform, hoping to use gas and cotton sales to sustain its economy.

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Between 1998 and 2002, Turkmenistan suffered from the continued lack of adequate export routes for natural gas and from obligations on extensive short-term external debt.

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In 2009 the government of Turkmenistan began a policy of diversifying export routes for its raw materials.

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On 1 January 2016, Russia halted natural gas purchases from Turkmenistan after reducing them step by step for the previous years.

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Turkmenistan government continues to pursue construction of the Turkmenistan–Afghanistan–Pakistan–India Pipeline, or TAPI.

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Much of the oil produced in Turkmenistan is refined in the Turkmenbasy and Seydi refineries.

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On 21 January 2021, the governments of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan signed a memorandum of understanding to develop jointly an oil field in the Caspian Sea that straddles the nations' border.

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Until 1957, however, most electrical power in Turkmenistan was produced locally by small Diesel generators and Diesel-electric locomotives.

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In 1957 Soviet authorities created a republic-level directorate for power generation, and in 1966 Turkmenistan entered the first phase of connecting its remote regions to the regional Central Asian electrical grid.

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Turkmenistan is a net exporter of electrical power to Central Asian republics and southern neighbors.

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Turkmenistan started producing cotton in the Murghab Valley following conquest of Merv by the Russian Empire in 1884.

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Turkmenistan reported arrival of 14, 438 foreign tourists in 2019.

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For tourists visiting Turkmenistan, organized tours exist providing visits to historical sites in and near Dasoguz, Konye-Urgench, Nisa, Ancient Merv, and Mary, as well as beach tours to Avaza and medical tours and holidays in the sanatoria in Mollagara, Bayramaly, Yylysuw and Archman.

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Rail service in Turkmenistan began as part of Imperial Russia's Trans-Caspian Railway, then of the Central Asian Railway.

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Available figures indicate that most of Turkmenistan's citizens are ethnic Turkmens with sizeable minorities of Uzbeks and Russians.

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Turkmenistan has done everything to distance itself from Russian language's lingual soft power tool, first step was the shift to the Latin alphabet in 1993, and Russian lost its status as the language of inter-ethnic communication in 1996.

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Until 2007 Turkmenistan fell under the religious jurisdiction of the Russian Orthodox archbishop in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, but since then has been subordinate to the Archbishop of Pyatigorsk and Cherkessia.

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Holidays in Turkmenistan practiced internationally include New Year's Day, Nowruz, Eid al-Fitr, and Eid al-Adha.

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International sports events hosted in Turkmenistan include; the 2021 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, the 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games, and the 2018 World Weightlifting Championships.

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