Turkmen students still have no access to high schools in Kyrgyzstan, though the two countries signed a relevant agreement in early August, Alternative News of Turkmenistan (ANT) reported on September 3.
Referring to Taken Akylbekova, the rector of the International University of Kyrgyzstan (IUK), ANT reported that 200 students from Turkmenistan studied at the given university yet four years ago, but in 2010, Ashgabat stopped sending students to Kyrgyzstan.
More than 60 citizens of Turkmenistan studied at Institute of Information Technologies in Education (IITE). At present, there are no Turkmen students there, ANT reports citing Tatyana Baltiyeva, a representative of the IITE. Baltiyeva said they invite students from Turkmenistan and receive calls from applicants from that country, with no results, however. Baltiyeva told ANT one of the probable reasons is that Kyrgyz higher education certificates are not welcome in Turkmenistan, and the employers there prefer hiring persons with diplomas of other universities. Hence, lack of Turkmen students in Kyrgyzstan may be connected not only with the hindrances created by the authorities.
The American University of Central Asia (AUCA) told ANT that three entrants from Turkmenistan passed the examinations successfully, but only one of them – she has Russian citizenship - managed arrive at the beginning of the educational year. The two other students were not allowed to leave for Kyrgyzstan.
According to ANT, the silent ban on travel to Kyrgyzstan, mainly to study at the AUCA, was imposed on Turkmen students in the summer of 2009. Then about 150 people were not allowed to leave for Kyrgyzstan to continue their education after summer holidays. In winter of 2010, the U.S. and Turkmen governments permitted the students, mainly U.S. scholarship holders, to continue their education at similar American universities in Bulgaria and at the Smolny Institute in Saint Petersburg.