Russian political scientists on repressions against opposition in Turkmenistan

Repressions against the political opposition in Turkmenistan, following the "attempt" on Sapamurat Niyazov "is quite typical of the eastern despotic regimes". President of the "Politika" foundation Vyacheslav Nikonov expressed this opinion in an interview with RIA Novosti on Monday.

When speaking about the November "attempt" on Turkmenistan's president, the political scientist called it "strange". "Terrorist attacks are not committed in this way," he stressed and added that this event had become an excuse for a cleanup of the political opposition".

While giving comments on "confessing" evidence of one of the Turkmen opposition's leaders Boris Shikhmuradov, the political scientist pointed out that "it was predictable." "Being aware that all his close relatives were in prison and being tortured he decided to ward off a blow yielding himself to the Turkmen authorities," Nikonov said. "Following this logic we expected any confessions from him," the political scientist stressed.

The Turkmen television broadcast former Turkmen Vice Premier Boris Shikhmuradov's so-called evidence, who pledged guilty of all possible crimes from preparation of the attempt on Sapamurat Niyazov to taking drugs and mafia activities. Moreover, Shikhmuradov did his best to praise Turkmenistan's current president.

"Dictatorship's logic implying a policy of cracking down in Turkmenistan is 100 pre cent power consolidation," Nikonov pointed out. "Moreover, he said that the latest events in the country were unlikely to influence the country's civil population" as Turkmenistan had never had "civil rights before".

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