Internet cafes open in Turkmenistan

By: nart on 18 February 2007

Just days after the inauguration of President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, Turkmenistan saw the opening of its first Internet cafes. While the cafes are few in number and high in hourly cost, they appear to offer unfiltered and unmonitored public access to the Web -- an unprecedented development in the Central Asian country and one promised by Berdymukhamedov during his campaign for the presidency. It remains to be seen whether the new president will continue to make good on his promises, as Reporters Without Borders has urged, and further undo the restrictions on information and free expression maintained by late president Saparmurat Niyazov.