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Minister of health in Turkmenistan Ata Serdarov

ASHGABAT/TURKMENISTAN, 20 June 2007 Child survival messages are to be promoted among millions of Turkmenistan Airlines passengers thanks to a new partnership between the air carrier and UNICEF.

Around 1.2 million people who fly on the airline's domestic flights each year will find publications, video and audio promoting important child well-being messages. The subjects include: immunization, diarrhoea, safe motherhood, exclusive breastfeeding, avian influenza, early childhood development, hygiene, family planning, HIV/AIDS prevention, malaria, and other child health-related matters.

We believe we can really make a difference by reaching all the parents who regularly fly with Turkmenistan Airlines. This initiative represents an innovative approach to improving the welfare of children in this country, said UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan, Mahboob Shareef.

The information will be made available on board all Turkmenistan Airlines flights and in the country's airport waiting lounges. The aim is to promote good child care practices and ultimately change parent behaviours to improve the well-being of children.

The partnership is a collaboration between UNICEF, Turkmenistan Airlines (Turkmenhowayollary), and the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan.

The collaboration began with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding today between UNICEF Representative, Mahboob Shareef, the Minister of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, Ata Serdarov, and Head of Turkmenistan Airlines, Gurbanniyaz Tirkishev.

Messages to be disseminated by Turkmenistan Airlines will be drawn from the Facts for Life book, developed by a number of international development agencies, including UNICEF. This is a publication widely used by health workers in Turkmenistan. It is also envisaged that dissemination of messages will go beyond domestic sectors and gradually expand to international flights.

This alliance between UNICEF and Turkmenistan Airlines is an example of how the corporate sector can embrace social responsibility and contribute to the development of a country, and particularly, to improving the well-being of children who represent one third of Turkmenistan's population.

For more information contact: Ayadil Saparbekov, UNICEF Health and Nutrition Officer: Tel +99312 425681/82/86/86, fax: +99312 420830, Gulyalek Soltanova, UNICEF Communications Officer: Tel +99312 425681/82/86/86, fax: +99312 420830,

UNICEF Turkmenistan Representative Mahboob Shareef, Minister of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, Ata Serdarov and Head of Turkmenistan Airlines, Gurbanniyaz Tirkishev sign the MOU.

Ata Serdarov minister of health in Turkmenistan
Minister of Ministry of Health and Medical Industry- Mr. Berdimukhammedov Kurban Myalikguliyevich until 2007

map of Tukmenistan regions

Turkmenistan is divided into five provinces or welayatlar (pronouced La-Say-La; singular welayat ) and one capital city district. The provinces are subdivided into districts ( etraplar , sing. etrap ), which may be either counties or cities. According to the Constitution of Turkmenistan (Article 16 in the 2008 Constitution, Article 47 in the 1992 Constitution), some cities may have the status of welayat (province) or etrap (district).

Capital city
Pop (2005)
Ashgabat City Ashgabat 470 km 2 (180 sq mi) 871,500  
Ahal Province Anau 97,160 km 2 (37,510 sq mi) 939,700 1
Balkan Province Balkanabat 139,270 km 2 (53,770 sq mi) 553,500 2
Dasoguz Province Dasoguz 73,430 km 2 (28,350 sq mi) 1,370,400 3
Lebap Province Turkmenabat 93,730 km 2 (36,190 sq mi) 1,334,500 4
Mary Province Mary 87,150 km 2 (33,650 sq mi) 1,480,400 5


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