Large-scale New Year festivities cancelled in Turkmenistan’s provinces

President Park Geun-hye has expressed uneasy feelings about the increasing number of accusations against her, saying too many she doesn't know about have been taken factually.

The president on Thursday held a meeting with a team of her defense counsels for about an hour and a half.

The lawyers cited President Park as expressing regret, saying suspicions she is not even aware of have oftentimes been accepted as facts.

A participant at the meeting said many questions and answers were exchanged regarding legal issues of the impeachment trial.

The meeting was attended by her nine attorneys, as well as former Constitutional Court judge Lee Dong-heup, who has recently joined the team to defend the president at the impeachment trial.

The Constitutional Court said it handed over the prosecution's investigation records on the Choi Soon-sil scandal to the president's lawyers on Thursday. The parliament's legal counsel picked up the documents on Wednesday.

Source: KBS World Radio

For the first time in many years public sector employees can celebrate the New Year's Eve at home with their family members. The large-scale events in front of the municipal Christmas trees have been cancelled.

On 29 December secondary schools of Lebap velayat (formerly, Chardjou region) received an instruction pursuant to which teachers and senior graders are recommended to celebrate the New Year at home. School administrations do not need to organize the participation of their staff in mass events.

In the morning of 31 December children's performances will be held in schools. No other events, including joint celebrations, will be held in educational establishments, cafes and restaurants.

According to our sources, a similar situation is being observed in other country's provinces.

We have received reports from Dashoguz that television footage of the New Year's festivities has been held in the city for two days.

In the morning of 31 December no events will be held but five teachers from each school are obliged to take part in the festive flag-raising ceremony which is scheduled to be held at the Flag Square in the morning of 1 January. Teachers are supposed to arrive at the venue at 6:30 a.m.

We failed to find out the reasons behind the cancellation of mass festivities.

From 6 p.m. on 31 December to 00:30 a.m. on 1 January employees of the education system, healthcare and other state-financed organizations as well as students and schoolchildren had been previously obliged to attend the celebrations at the squares where the main municipal Christmas trees and big screens were installed. The President of Turkmenistan addressed the people with the New Year greetings.

Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan