Former Top Turkmen Security Official Dies In Prison

The former deputy chief of Turkmenistan’s Committee for National Security (KNB), Tirkish Tyrmyev, has reportedly died in custody at the age of 66.

An international human rights campaign called Prove They Are Alive issued a statement on January 16 saying that Tyrmyev's body had been delivered to his relatives on January 13.

The group's statement came three days after Tyrmyev's daughter wrote on Facebook that her father's body was handed to their relatives in Ashgabat.

There was no official confirmation of Tyrmyev's death.

Sources in Ashgabat confirmed to RFE/RL that Tyrmyev's body was delivered to relatives.

Tyrmyev was arrested in April 2002 and sentenced in May 2002 to 10 years in prison on charges of abusing his power. Other top security officers were arrested with him, including KNB chief Muhammed Nazarov.

In 2012, just days before he was due to be released, Tyrmyev was convicted of attacking a prison guard. His prison term was extended to 2019.