Non-News from Nowheresville Round-up

23 Jul

As the temperature hits the mid-30s in Almaty and remains super-scorchio across the region as a whole, the non-news generator has been working overtime in Central Asia and beyond.

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Turkmenistan’s President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov – not waving goodbye just yet?

On Sunday, 21 July, rumours of the untimely demise of Turkmenistan’s beloved leader, Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov, started doing the rounds on social media – Turkmen officials have denied that he’s popped his clogsdenied that he’s popped his clogs, but at the time of writing he still hadn’t been seen in public since before the rumours began…

Atambayev'den Kırgızca açıklaması

They’re coming to take me away, ha, ha….

Not to be outdone, rumours have been swirling around Kyrgyzstan that former president Almazbek Atambayev is about to be arrested after falling out with Sooronbai Jeenbekov, his protégé and now incumbent  president  – something else that has yet to come to pass.

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The UK in dire straits – please give generously…

Meanwhile, over in Britian, this piece of unbelievable news is actually true – Boris Johnson has become Prime Minister, elected by 66% of the Tory party’s 160,000 members – a fine day for democracy.

In a move that may well stun London’s political establishment, Britain’s newly-minted prime minister could make his first foreign trip to – Qazaqstan. While observers in Britain may be baffled by this move, this came as no surprise to leading circles in Nur-Sultan.

“A novice prime minister like Boris has to play a delicate role of projecting continuity with the previous regime and at the same time espousing change,” our source in Akorda told kazaxia. “So naturally he would want to seek out the world-renowned expert on this, Qasym-Jomart Toqaev.” Ironically, both have similar nicknames in their respective local media, BoJo and QoJo, the source added.

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All aboard – timely tips from Qazaqstan on how to deal with demos

BoJo is likely to take advice on how to turn a coronation by a tiny circle into a broad popular mandate: a speedy general election, the deployment of seasoned international commentators to back the transition and, no doubt, the deployment of fleets of Boris buses to handle those pesky opponents.

“I hear that the chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Qazaqstan, who was quick to praise the endorsement of QoJo, has arranged for many of his friends in Nur-Sultan’s elite to be ready to observe a similar public endorsement of BoJo by Britain’s grateful electorate,” the Akorda source added.

“Boris is, like QoJo, an inspired choice, and all should back him,” seasoned election observer Lord Venal told kazaxia. “I was lucky enough to meet him only once and regrettably, as the music in the nightclub was rather loud, I didn’t have the chance to talk to him. But he seemed a convivial cove. I hope to meet him again on his forthcoming visit.”

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