Kyarizov, Geldy

Gender: .
State of concern: .

Who, Why and How exiled:

A longtime champion of the desert country's iconic Akhal Teke horse breed, Kyarizov was instrumental in returning the majestic animal to prominence after the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union. He led the Turkmen Atlary (Turkmen Horses) State Agency. However, Kyarizov became swept up in a purge launched by Niyazov after what Turkmen authorities claimed was an assassination attempt against Niyazov in November 2002 (Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty,  2015).

Category of exile: . (Definitions here.)
Alleged affiliation: Former insider.

Turkmen Atlary (Turkmen Horses state agency).

Which stages experienced: Stage 1   Stage 2   Stage 3. (Definitions here.)
Date of most serious incident: 2015.
Violence experienced: .

Stage 1 details (accusations/ charges/ Interpol notice/ extradition requests):

Kyarizov was charged with abuse of office and negligence- charges often associated with those who have fallen out of favour with the authorities (Radio Free Europe, 2015).

Stage 2 details (arrest/ detention/ extradition):

Kyarizov was arrested in 2002 ( Human Rights Watch,2015).

Stage 3 details (attack/ abduction/ rendition/ torture/ assassination/ death):

He served six years in prison (during which 5 months in 'Ovadan-Depe' prison) (Centre 1, 2017).

Other actions during Stages 1–3 (dispossession/ overseas assets frozen/ intimidation/ action against associates/ …):

Two family members targeted in an alleged attempted hit-and-run on the morning of 5th August 2015 (Human Rights Watch, 2015).

Kyarizov’s son said that during an interrogation before his trial, Kyarizov suffered a heart attack, which left him partially paralysed. While in detention, he developed a spinal hernia, atrophic gastritis, chronic bronchitis, and other diseases. Kyarizov was in desperate need of medical treatment, however when he and his family sought medical treatment on the 22nd January 2014,they were followed by ten Ministry of National Security cars, which surrounded them and forced them to stop. The family was badly beaten (Amnesty International,  2014). On the two occasions Kyarizov has sought to travel to receive medical support- to Switzerland in December 2014, Moscow in August 2015- they were prevented from boarding the plane (Human Rights Watch, 2015).

Kyarizov had attempted unsuccessfully to leave the country with his daughter and Serebryannik in August 2015 and December 2014. On both occasions, Turkmen officials told him that only he was under a travel ban but stamped the tickets of all three indicating that they had been prohibited from leaving (Human Rights Watch, 2015).

In 2015, he and his family were allowed to leave the country. For many years, Kyarizov and his family were forbidden to leave Turkmenistan (Human Rights Watch, 2015).

He lived in Moscow and later in  Prague (Centre 1, 2017).

International arrest warrant: .

Countries of transit, asylum and/or residence: , .

Legal status (refugee/ asylum seeker/ resident):

He has received political asylum in Europe (Centre 1, 2017).

Current status:

In 2016, Amnesty International have reported that after numerous attempts over several years, Kyarizov was allowed to travel to Russia for specialist medical treatment and to join his wife, as were other members of his family (Amnesty International, 2016).

He  is currently residing in EU countries where he founded the international expert centre on horse breeding “Yanardag” (Centre 1, 2017).

Press sources:

Amnesty International, 2015/2016.  'Amnesty International Report 2015/16 - Turkmenistan', 24 February 2016 [Online]. Available at:

Amnesty International, 2014. 'Turkmenistan: Further information: Former prisoner denied urgent medical care: Geldy Kyarizov', 28 January 2014.[Online]. Available at:

Human Rights Watch, 2013. ‘Turkmenistan: Expert Blocked From Leaving Count’. 13th August 2015. [Online]. Available at: (Last accessed on the 14th April 2016)

Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty, ‘'Torture By Hunger': Horse Breeder Describes Desperate Days In Turkmen Prison’, 5th December 2015.[Online]. Available at: (Last accessed on the 14th April 2016)

Centre 1. "Гельды Кяризов: «В Туркменистане губят ахалтекинскую породу лошадей»" , 3rd March, 2017. [Online]. Available at: