Turkmenistan Millennial Baby Named Gurbansoltan

That’s a clunky title, isn’t it?

According to Turkmen TV, a baby girl born on 1 January 2000 in the village of Gämi was Turkmenistan’s first baby of the new millennium. The baby was named Gurbansoltan after president Saparmurat Niyazov’s late mother.

This doesn’t seem suspicious…until you learn that Niyazov was a nut case who particularly liked renaming things after himself and members of his family. For instance, he renamed the month of April, a district in the Daşoguz Province, the Women’s Union of Turkmenistan and bread (yes, bread!) after his mother.

Niyazov had ordered that “5,000 dollars and valuable gifts” be sent the baby’s parents. I wonder if these weren’t used as some sort of name-bribe.

Sources: Civil Society Reels After ‘Blow’ Against Niyazov, Turkmen go back to old calendar, Turkmen millenium baby named after president’s mother (via BBC archive)

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