Cablegate: Berdimuhamedov and Turkmenistan's Ruling Family
PP RUEHAG RUEHBI RUEHCI RUEHDBU RUEHLH RUEHNEH RUEHPW RUEHROV RUEHSL
DE RUEHAH #1633/01 3521357
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 181357Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY ASHGABAT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3934
INFO RUCNCLS/ALL SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA COLLECTIVE
RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA 6025
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 3719
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO 3578
RUEHIT/AMCONSUL ISTANBUL 4267
RHMCSUU/CDR USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RUEHVEN/USMISSION USOSCE 4206
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1332
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RHEBAAA/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 ASHGABAT 001633
STATE FOR SCA/CEN
EO 12958 DECL: 12/17/2019
TAGS PGOV, PINR, TX
SUBJECT: BERDIMUHAMEDOV AND TURKMENISTAN’S RULING FAMILY
REF: ASHGABAT 1503
Classified By: Charge d’Affaires Sylvia Reed Curran. Reasons 1.4 (B) a nd (D).
1. (C) SUMMARY: Turkmen President Berdimuhammedov is vain, fastidious, vindictive, a micro-manager, and a bit of an Ahal Teke “nationalist.” He also is the only son in a family of eight children. His father is a retired prison guard with the rank of colonel. The father, many in Turkmenistan think, is more intelligent than the son. Berdimuhamedov reportedly has a Turkmen wife and a Russian mistress. He has two daughters and a son with his Turkmen spouse and a daughter with his Russian wife. One of his sons-in-law runs the London office of the Turkmen State Agency for Management and Use of Hydrocarbon Resources. His other daughter lives with her husband, a diplomat, in Paris. XXXXXXXXXXXX
2. (C) President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov is the “decider” for the state of Turkmenistan. Since his word is often law, it is beneficial to understand what makes him tick and to know something about those closest to him, his family. According to XXXXXXXXXXXX, Berdimuhamedov is vain, suspicious, guarded, strict, very conservative, a practiced liar, “a good actor,” and vindictive (reftel). XXXXXXXXXXXX said that while he usually forgets something after a few months or a year, Berdimuhamedov never forgets. Our source described Berdimuhamedov as a micromanager. He said that the president signs off on work schedules for experienced doctors.
3. (C) Our source said Berdimuhamedov is very clean and neat and requires all around him to be the same. XXXXXXXXXXXX When Berdimuhamedov became the head of a dental clinic, he insisted that the other men who worked there had creases in their pants. About 30 years ago, when Berdimuhamedov owned an old Russian car, he would leave it at home if it rained and take a taxi instead.
4. (C) Berdimuhamedov apparently does not think all Turkmen are the same. He once told our source that the true and first Turkmen come from the area between Kaka and Baharly in Ahal Province. Other people are not real Turkmen.
5. (C) Berdimuhamedov does not like people who are smarter than he is. Since he’s not a very bright guy, our source offered, he is suspicious of a lot of people. Our source claimed Berdimuhamedov did not like America, Iran, or turkey, but likes China. (COMMENT: Berdimuhamedov probably views other countries in terms of what they can do for him and his country, rather than in terms of like or dislike. END COMMENT.) He also asserted that the president is not fond of either Uzbek President Karimov or Kazakhstan President Nazarbayev.
BORN OF GOODLY PARENTS
6. (SBU) Gurbanguly Berdimuhammedov’s father, Myalikguly Berdimuhamedov, worked as a senior Interior Ministry officer in a prison guard detachment. He retired as a Colonel of
ASHGABAT 00001633 002 OF 002
Internal Troops. In local public opinion, the father is rumored to be far more intelligent than his son. The president’s mother was a housewife. The president’s parents now live with their son in the official residence in Firuza Valley, which is 19 km from Ashgabat. His grandfather Berdimuhamed Annayev was the principal of a school in his native village of Izgant.
WIFE, MISTRESS AND CHILDREN
7. (C) Berdimuhammedov is married and has two daughters and one son, Serdar. The oldest daughter is married to Yhlasgeldi Amanov, who is a representative of the Turkmen Agency for Use and Management of Hydrocarbon Resources for Europe, posted in London. His other daughter lives with her husband, who works at the Turkmenistan Embassy in Paris. A local Turkmen entrepreneur claims this daughter has a villa on the Cote d’Azure in southern France. There is a rumor among Ashgabat residents that Berdimuhamedov has a mistress, in addition to his Turkmen wife, who is reportedly very conservative. The mistress is supposedly an ethnic Russian by the name of Marina. She was reportedly a nurse at a dental clinic where Berdimuhamedov worked earlier in his career, and has a 14-year old daughter with the president. Berdimuhamedov’s wife has reportedly been living in London since 2007.
SISTERS-HOUSEWIVES, SISTERS-TEACHERS AND SISTERS-BUSINESSWOMEN
8. (SBU) Berdimuhamedov is the only son in his family of eight children. One of the younger sisters teaches at the Turkmen National Economy University; another, the youngest one, is a housewife married to a Central Bank employee. His second oldest sister, Aynabat Berdimuhamedova, actively exploits the influence of her brother.10. (SBU) COMMENT: Berdimuhamedov has gone to great lengths to conceal information about his family and personal life from the public. For a public figure who tries to project an image as a renaissance man, whether it be author, surgeon, pilot, sportsman or statesman, the failure to cultivate a “family man” image leaves a void that the public is ready to fill. END COMMENT. CURRAN