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|Assumed office 14 February 2007 Acting 21 December 2006 - 14 February 2007|
|Assumed office 4 August 2007 Acting 21 December 2006 - 4 August 2007|
|In office 2001 – 17 February 2007|
|(1957-06-29) 29 June 1957 (age 55) Babarab, Turkmen SSR, Soviet Union|
|Democratic Party of Turkmenistan|
|Turkmen State Medical Institute|
Gurbanguly Mälikgulyýewiç Berdimuhamedow (or Gurbanguly Berdymuhamedov, Berdymukhammedov,..., born June 29, 1957) has served as the President of Turkmenistan since December 21, 2006. On that day he became acting president following the death of Saparmurat Niyazov and the imprisonment of Niyazov's constitutionally appointed successor, Öwezgeldi Ataýew. Berdimuhamedow and the Halk Maslahaty announced on December 26 that the next presidential elections would take place on February 11, 2007. On February 14, 2007, Berdimuhamedow was named the winner of the presidential election held three days earlier, and immediately sworn into office. In the 2012 elections, he was re-elected with 97% of the vote. He uses the honorific title Arkadag, meaning "Patron".
As President, Berdimuhamedow has gradually dismantled the extensive cult of personality surrounding Saparmurat Niyazov.
Berdimuhamedow was born on 11 June 1957 in Babarab in what is now the Geok Tepe etrap ("district") of Ahal province. He graduated from the Turkmen State Medical Institute in 1979 and entered a career in dentistry. He also received a PhD in medical sciences in Moscow. By 1992 he had become part of the dentistry faculty at the Medical Institute.
In an interview when asked about his life experience Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow said:
"It is too early for me to write a detailed biography. My biography is in many respects typical of people of my generation."
On influencing factors to his character:
"My parents always managed to maintain the hospitable atmosphere in the family. They were happy at an opportunity to communicate openly with people - friends and relatives. They always took active part in the resolving of other people's problems and difficulties...(more)...this necessity in empathy my parents had instilled in me in the childhood influenced, to the considerable extent, my choice to devote my life to medicine...(more)...readiness to help a neighbor is peculiar to the society as a whole, it may characterize the strength and moral health of the nation. The Turkmen literature has many splendid authors who gave the world their immortal works that express the profound Turkmen people's wisdom in a concentrated form. I admire Magtymguly, Andalib, Azadi, Kemine... Due to my medical education I read a lot the works of Ibn Sina (Avicenna), a great scholar of the medieval times, with great interest. The expanse of his interests and the depth of the scientist's judgments struck me. Ibn Sina was a great man not only as a doctor but as a philosopher and thinker as well."
In 1995, during the rule of Saparmurat Niyazov, Berdimuhamedow became head of the dentistry center of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry. He was appointed to the government as Minister of Health in 1997, and he was additionally appointed as Deputy Prime Minister in 2001. In April 2004, Niyazov suspended Berdimuhamedow's salary for three months because healthcare workers were also not being paid.
The Health Ministry was responsible for carrying out Niyazov's notorious order to close all hospitals outside of the capital city and major regional towns in 2005.
According to a cable from the US embassy in Ashgabat, Berdymukhamedov is married with two daughters and a son, but his wife lives in London. He has another daughter with his long-term Russian mistress.President of TurkmenistanWith Dmitry Medvedev and Nursultan NazarbayevPresident of Turkmenistan in MoscowWith Barack Obama and Michelle Obama
The State Security Council of Turkmenistan appointed Berdimuhamedow acting president. The Council stated in its announcement that Öwezgeldi Ataýew, who as the Chairman of the Assembly of Turkmenistan was to become the acting president, was not appointed "in view of the fact that the prosecutor-general had instituted criminal proceedings against him."
Article 60 of the Turkmen Constitution stipulated that the acting president "may not stand for election to the Presidency", which would have barred Berdimuhamedow from running in the 2007 presidential elections. However, on December 24, 2006 People's Council voted to remove this provision, making him eligible for the election as one of the six chosen candidates, all members of the Democratic Party of Turkmenistan. Berdimuhamedow was supported by the current elite, and the official results showed him as winning 89% of the vote. In his first presidential trip abroad, Berdimuhamedow visited Saudi Arabia in mid-April 2007. There he performed the Umrah pilgrimage and met with King Abdullah. He then visited Russia and President Vladimir Putin at the end of the same month.
|This section requires expansion. (June 2008)|
He has also been quoted as saying
"A human being always communicates with God... There is no place for insincerity and craftiness. Even if you try to palter before God he will see it anyway. Truly, the one who can afford talking honestly and sincerely not only to God but people as well is happy."In office Main article: History of Turkmenistan#Since_2006