EC President Juncker to deliver annual State of the Union speech on 12 September
On Wednesday, 12 September 2018, the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, will deliver his annual State of the Union address in the European Parliament Hemicycle.
In last year's speech, President Juncker outlined his vision for how the European Union could evolve by 2025. The speech was accompanied by concrete initiatives on trade, investment screening, cybersecurity, industry and data. This year's speech comes ahead of the 2019 European elections and in the context of the ongoing debate about the future of the European Union at 27. The speech will again be accompanied by new proposals, putting words immediately into action.
Each year, the State of the Union address takes stock of achievements of the past year and presents the priorities for the year ahead. The President also sets out how the Commission will address the most pressing challenges the European Union is facing. The speech is followed by a plenary debate. This kick-starts the dialogue with the European Parliament and Council to prepare the Commission Work Programme for the following year.
The European Commission will stream an enhanced version of the speech (with graphics, charts and various other visuals), via Facebook LIVE.
President of Turkmenistan and King of Bahrain discuss cooperation on the international arena
The top-level talks between Turkmenistan and Bahrain take place in Ashgabat. Upon completion of the one-on-one talks, the negotiations continue in the extended format with the participation of the members of the official delegations of the two countries.
It was noted during the meeting that this was the first state visit of the King of Bahrain to Turkmenistan and therefore, the sides have high expectations of this visit, considering it as an important event in the history of the two countries and peoples.
The agenda of the current talks includes a wide spectrum of issues related to the bilateral relations and every possibility to bring them to a new level, meeting the long-term strategic interests of our states.
The key theme of discussions is the cooperation between Turkmenistan and the King of Bahrain in the foreign-policy sphere, where the both countries demonstrate mutual understanding, common positions and approaches to the main global issues, in particular the sustainable development and security in the world, Central Asia and Middle East.
The sides expressed the confidence in that the political and diplomatic mechanisms and tools should be used to resolve conflicts and ensure the durable and long-lasting peace as well as agreed to mutually support each other in fames of the international organizations.
During the current talks, Turkmenistan and Bahrain have confirmed the commonality of views on such important political issues as contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals, the struggle against the universal challenges, including terrorism, extremism, cross-border crime, illicit drug trafficking. The most important condition for such cooperation is the intensification of systematic relations between the governments of both countries and the agencies of foreign affairs.
Statement of the State Security Service of Georgia
"Foreign media has released the photos of cartridges of firearms, used in the course of a terrorist attack that took place in New Zealand. Symbols and inscriptions in various languages, including Georgian are inscribed on them. The State Security Service of Georgia has already established cooperation with the strategic partners, in order to receive information on the individuals detained, as well as the weapons seized in the course of the terrorist attack.
The State Security Service of Georgia expresses its condolences to the people of New Zealand over a terrorist attack," reads the statement.
The attacks in two mosques of New Zealand has killed at least 40. Four people are believed to be in custody, including three men and one woman. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said they were not on terror watch lists. Daily Mail has released photos, one of which shows the shooter's weapons marked with the names of other people who, according to the edition, have carried out attacks. The names are written in various languages, including Georgian. In particular, the weapons are marked in Georgian with the names of Davit Aghmashenebeli and Davit Soslani.
Ambassador Hartzell and State Minister Tsikhelashvili visit teachers in Pankisi
On Friday 22 February, EU Ambassador to Georgia Carl Hartzell travelled to the North of the Kakheti region of Georgia. Together with Ketevan Tsikhelashvili, State Minister for Reconciliation and Civic Equality, he met with a group of schoolteachers and principals who had visited Brussels on a recent study trip.
The Ambassador and the State Minister visited a state school in Birkiani and engaged in a lively conversation with both teachers and local schoolchildren. Later in the day, the 20 teachers who travelled to Brussels recently shared not only their impressions of Europe, but also some delicious traditional food from the local area of Pankisi.
“Earlier this month, teachers from Pankisi travelled to the European Union. Today the European Union visited Pankisi,” Ambassador Hartzell said. “I am truly grateful for the warm hospitality that I encountered here, and I am convinced that the teachers will spread their newly gained knowledge about the EU among their students and communities.”
During the visit to Pankisi, Ambassador Hartzell and State Minister Tsikhelashvili sat down together with representatives of local authorities, the Council of Elders and the Women's Council to discuss current issues in the Pankisi community.
President of Afghanistan Mohammad Ashraf Ghani arrives on official visit in Ashgabat
President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan came on official visit to Turkmen capital tonight. Talks between Presidents Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and Mohammad Ashraf Ghani will be held in Ashgabat on February 21.
This high-level meeting is to become another important step toward the improvement of cooperation of two countries, which nations are united by centuries-old traditions of friendship and historical and cultural relations.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov highlighted at the session of the Cabinet of Ministers on February 15 that relations between Turkmenistan and Afghanistan at present moment have significantly activated and entered new levels.
The Head of the State noted that neutral Turkmenistan steadily implements constructive strategy meeting both national interests and the concept of sustainable development in regional and global scale.
Speaking for the regulation of the situation in Afghanistan by exclusively peaceful political and diplomatic measures, Turkmenistan proposes specific measures aimed at the restoration of the economy and social infrastructure of neighbouring country.
This is indicated by the initiatives of Turkmen side proposed at the sessions of the UN General Assembly and other representative international forums including on the construction of the TAPI pipeline. Practical implementation of this major project will be actual contribution to the formation of modern architecture of global energy security and will support the solution of current social problems in Afghanistan, in particular the creation of new working places.
Cooperation in such strategic sphere as transport, which has significant potential, is also very important. In the future, it will allow Afghanistan connecting to the system of transit and transport traffic in regional and international scale supporting its integration to the world economic relations.
Expressing the solidarity with fraternal Afghan nation in its desire for peace and harmony, Turkmenistan would continue rendering comprehensive support and necessary humanitarian aid, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov highlighted.
It is expected that the agenda of Turkmen – Afghan high-level talks will include wide spectrum of issues of interstate cooperation both in bilateral format as well as under competent international organizations and structures, first the UN. The leaders of two countries will discuss key directions of beneficial partnership in trade and economic, energy, transport and transit spheres.
As it was mentioned before, special attention will be paid to the implementation of major infrastructural projects including the construction of Turkmenistan – Afghanistan – Pakistan – India transnational gas pipeline and Turkmenistan – Afghanistan – Pakistan power and fibre optic lines as well as to further development of international transport corridors, which include existing Serhetabat – Turgundy and Kerky – Ymamnazar – Akina railroads.
Humanitarian sphere is an integral component of Turkmen – Afghan cooperation. As is known, our country builds social facilities in neighbouring country, in particular medical and educational infrastructure, together with the supplies of liquefied gas and electricity by beneficial price, various free of charge humanitarian cargos. In addition, Afghan students study in educational facilities of Turkkmenistan receiving professional knowledges in different spheres.
Big package of documents, which are to give new stimulus to constructive political dialog, expansion of trade and economic partnership, cultural and humanitarian contacts between two countries and nations, is planned to be signed by the outcomes of high-level meeting.
The state news agency of Turkmenistan
The official ceremony of meeting the President of Afghanistan in Ashgabat
The official ceremony of meeting President of Afghanistan Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, who arrived in Turkmenistan on the official visit, took place in Ashgabat.
In the morning, the motor cortege of the President of Afghanistan, accompanied by the motorcycle escort of honour headed to the Square of Independence. The President of Turkmenistan cordially greeted the President of Afghanistan and the leaders of the two countries headed to the special podium.
The commander of the Guard of Honour reported to the President and the State anthems of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and Turkmenistan were performed. The leaders of the two countries walked past the Guard of Honour. President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov presented the members of the official delegation of Turkmenistan to the President of Afghanistan. The distinguished guest met with the leaders of the diplomatic corps accredited in our country. In turn, the head of the neighbouring state introduced the members of the government delegation of Afghanistan to the President of Turkmenistan.
Upon completion of the ceremony, the Guard of Honour marched past the Independence Square.
The leaders of the two states headed to the Ruhyet Palace. After the official photographing ceremony, the Presidents of Turkmenistan and Afghanistan had the one-on-one top-level talks.
The state news agency of Turkmenistan