Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 October 2014, 08:20 GMT

Former Turkmen parliament speaker reportedly released from prison

Publisher Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
Publication Date 21 March 2012
Cite as Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Former Turkmen parliament speaker reportedly released from prison, 21 March 2012, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4f717af0c.html [accessed 22 October 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

March 21, 2012

A human rights website has reported that Turkmenistan's former speaker of parliament, Ovezgeldy Atayev, and his wife have been released from custody.

The Vienna-based "Khronika Turkmenistana" said the news was announced by Turkmenistan's Deputy Foreign Minister Vepa Hadjiev during United Nations Human Rights Committee hearings on Turkmenistan last week.

No other confirmation of the alleged release was available.

The Atayevs have been serving prison terms on domestic abuse charges, allegedly for driving their daughter-in-law to attempt suicide.

Ovezgeldy Atayev had been expected to take over as acting Turkmen president – as per the constitution – following the death of longtime ruler Saparmurat Niyazov in December 2006.

But Atayev was arrested shortly after Niyazov's death and the constitution was abruptly amended, clearing the way for current President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov to become acting president.

With reporting by RFE/RL's Turkmen Service

Copyright notice: Copyright (c) 2007-2009. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036

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