Tuesday, August 30, 2011 -
More than 2,000 Turkmen students from the international Turkmen-Turkish university held a farewell ceremony Monday in preparation for continuing their studies abroad this year.
The youths received government permission to study at higher and secondary specialized educational institutions in a gamut of countries including Turkey, Russia, Belarus, China, Malaysia and Romania, among others, the local Turkmenistan.ru news agency reported.
Not all students have been so fortunate.
Government authorities last year barred 100 students from studying at the American University of Central Asia, located in Kyrgyzstan.
In a separate clampdown, many Turkmen university students who fled home to escape deadly inter-ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan in summer 2010 were forbidden to return to their institutions after calm returned.
Turkmen officials explained that those students had not travelled abroad as part of a government educational initiative, Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported at the time.
Turkmen authorities seem keen to bar students from studying at private universities in other countries but are unconcerned by youths studying at state-sponsored universities abroad.
In March, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov stressed the importance of Turkmen graduates holding foreign educational qualifications as he unveiled plans to undertake a huge national reform program.
The president’s remarks reversed a former government policy that barred holders of foreign decrees from government employment.