How North Korea and Turkmenistan’s extreme personality cults align and differ | NK News
June 21, 2024
Features

How North Korea and Turkmenistan’s extreme personality cults align and differ

Both countries led by young third-generation authoritarians that siphon off state resources to maintain grip on power

Turkmenistan has been often called the North Korea of Central Asia. With an over-the-top cult of personality, heavy censorship, extreme secrecy and a legacy that extends back to the Soviet Union, the comparisons are abundant. 

As Turkmenistan enters a new stage of dynastic succession this year with the “election” of leader Serdar Berdymukhamedov, it’s worth examining how these two illiberal states compare, what their relationship is, and what it may look like in the coming years under the two relatively young leaders.

Become a member for less than $4 per week.

  • Unlimited access to all of NK News: reporting, investigations, analysis
  • The NK News Daily Update, an email newsletter to keep you in the loop
  • Searchable archive of all content, photo galleries, special columns
  • Contact NK News reporters with tips or requests for reporting
Get unlimited access to all NK News content, including original reporting, investigations, and analyses by our team of DPRK experts.
Subscribe now

All major cards accepted. No commitments – you can cancel any time.