|06ASHGABAT1042||2006-10-04 13:06:00||CONFIDENTIAL||Embassy Ashgabat|
VZCZCXYZ0003 PP RUEHWEB DE RUEHAH #1042 2771306 ZNY CCCCC ZZH P 041306Z OCT 06 FM AMEMBASSY ASHGABAT TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7866 RUEHSF/AMEMBASSY SOFIA PRIORITY 0023 INFO RUEHAK/AMEMBASSY ANKARA PRIORITY 2573 RUEHVI/AMEMBASSY VIENNA PRIORITY 0566 RUEHVEN/USMISSION USOSCE PRIORITY 1695
C O N F I D E N T I A L ASHGABAT 001042
1. (C) In response to ref A request, embassy recommends the
USG not intervene in the Begmedov/Hadzhiev case currently
under consideration in Bulgarian courts. End Summary.
Likely Guilty, Inaccurate and not Conducive to U.S. Interests
2. (C) Embassy thanks Embassy Sofia for consulting on the
request of Ogulsapar Myradova's relatives in Bulgaria,
Tadzhigul Begmedova and Annadurdy Hadzhiev, for the
United States to encourage the Government of Bulgaria to
grant them political asylum, vice humanitarian status (ref a)
and recommends against USG intervention.
-- Hadzhiev previously served as Deputy Chairman of
Turkmenistan's Central Bank, until he was convicted
in absentia of embezzlement; a crime of which he may be
-- Since Ogulspapar Myradova's arrest and subsequent death
(ref c), the Hadzhievs and the Turkmenistan Helsinki Foundation
based in Sofia, have consistently sensationalized the case
and repeated inaccuracies and mistruths.
-- Throughout the Myradova arrest, detention, death and
aftermath, post has distanced itself from characterizing
Myradova as a journalist or human rights advocate and
focused on requesting transparency and accountability
from the government. USG advocacy of the Begmedova-Hadzievs
would paint the United States as supportive of them
and their work, when in fact much of what the Turkmenistan Helsinki
Foundation prints is misleading and inaccurate. In addition,
advocacy of this case would reduce embassy's already limited
ability to interact with the government on the wide-range
of truly legitimate human rights cases existing in Turkmenistan.
3, (U) Based on the above, embassy submits the following
unclassified points for the Department's consideration:
-- Mr. Hadziev has been convicted of a serious crime in
-- Ms. Begmedova's and Mr. Hadzhiev's asylum case is for the
courts of Bulgaria to decide based on Bulgarian criteria for
-- The USG has no additional evidence regarding Mr. Hadziev's
guilt or innocence.
4. (C) The Begmedova-Hadzievs' actions and motivations
remain suspicious. Many international observers in Ashgabat
blame them for encouraging Myradova to become increasing more
vocal in her opposition to the government and for reporting
her observations back to Sofia using international telephone
lines, all of which are known to be monitored by the government.
They were playing a risky game that already has resulted
in one death. Embassy sees no USG role in advocating for the
Begmedova-Hadzievs; and does not want embassy's credibility
compromised by interfering in a case for which we do
not have all the facts. Embassy looks forward to consulting
further with the Department and Embassy Sofia on this case.