A new mosque was built in the township of Akina with the support of the Turkmen side
Today, on December 4, 2020, the opening of a mosque constructed in the township of Akina of the Andkhoy etrap of Faryab province of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan took place as a friendly gesture from the Turkmen side to the Afghan people.
As is known, in accordance with the Resolution of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the construction of a mosque for 500 seats started on November 2018. This decision was taken within the framework of support provided by Turkmenistan to achieve stability and security in Afghanistan, including humanitarian assistance to the brotherly Afghan people.
The opening ceremony was attended by a representative Turkmen delegation headed by the Chief Mufti of the country Y. Khojagulyev, which also included the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Turkmenistan to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan H. Ovezov, Consul of Turkmenistan in the city of Mazar-i-Sharif B. Kabaev, imams of Mary and Lebap velayats of the country and representatives of the Turkmen media.
On behalf of the Afghan side, the ceremony was attended by the Minister of Hajj and Islamic Affairs Mohammad Qasim Halimi, khyakim of Jovzjan province Lotfullah Azizi, khyakim of Faryab Nakibullah Faik province, representatives of the above Ministry and the IRA Foreign Ministry branch in Mazar-i-Sharif, representatives of departments and state services of the township of Aqina , as well as numerous Turkmens living in these regions.
The opening of the mosque on the eve of the 25th anniversary of the permanent Neutrality of Turkmenistan is especially symbolic. Turkmenistan, being a neutral state, whose status is enshrined in the relevant resolutions of the UN General Assembly, is doing a tremendous job to promote political and diplomatic, trade-economic, cultural and humanitarian cooperation in the entire region.
Turkmenistan pays great attention to the stable development of the neighboring country and renders fraternal solidarity and active support in its integration into the peaceful course of development.
Also, today, in honor of the opening of a new spiritual facility for the Afghan people, a humanitarian cargo was sent from Turkmenistan to the Afghan provinces of Jovzjan, Herat and Faryab, consisting of medicines and medical supplies and means, household, textile and food products produced in Turkmenistan.
A representative delegation from Turkmenistan, as well as high-ranking officials of various departments of Afghanistan, took part in the delivery ceremony of humanitarian aid in the township of Turgundi, Herat province.
Statement by President Salome Zourabichvili
Nine months ago, I made a personally difficult and painful decision for society that was aimed at maintaining state stability, and served to defeat a political crisis and polarization.
Unfortunately, polarization, tensions and confrontation continue to increase on a daily basis. Putting the electoral results declared legitimate under question, using any type of disobedience, encouraging social and public protests serve to weaken and destabilize the country.
This can lead to dire consequences - losing public confidence in democratic institutions is tantamount to setting a crushing precedent, not only for us but for democracies stronger than us. Respecting the election result and acknowledging loss is the cornerstone of democracy! The rejection of these democratic principles pleases only those forces, inside and outside the country, who put their political ambitions above the interests of the country and those in the region who perceive Georgia’s stability and democracy as a threat.
Today, I held a meeting with representatives of the diplomatic corps and discussed the current situation in detail. I believe that there is a need for immediate de-escalation of the situation and easing of tensions, which need, first of all, a real constructive dialogue, so that these processes do not damage the stability of the country and its international image.
Through my experience, I am ready to support all forms of dialogue, but I am convinced that compromise is only justified when both sides are ready for constructive dialogue and not when concessions are perceived as weakness, or even more so when it can be seen as someone's own victory. Constructive dialogue is also opposed to the imposition of preconditions and the radicalization of processes.
I, as the guarantor of this country’s independence, sovereignty, Europeanness, democratic development and therefore stability, reflecting on the interests of the country and of every citizen, believe that we will all be victorious through calm and development.
I hope that the Prime Minister-nominee and his future government will be able to end this severe process and will not allow anyone to put personal political ambitions above the country’s interests and endanger those institutions that are the foundation for a democratic and legal state.
Rik Daems, re-elected President, invites members to see PACE as vehicle for upholding shared values
Strasbourg, 25.01.2021 – Rik Daems, re-elected today for a second one-year term as President of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE), thanked members for their confidence and welcomed the holding of PACE’s first hybrid plenary session.
In his re-investiture speech, he stressed that while PACE’s savoir faire had brought many positive results throughout 2020 – be it the establishment of red lines not to be crossed during the Covid-19 pandemic, new standards in the field of artificial intelligence or the “trialogue” with the Committee of Ministers – the faire savoir was impossible as members could not meet under normal conditions. “Meeting in person is essential to interconnect, to convince and be convinced and to take on board all perspectives,” he added.
Rik Daems called on members not to ask “what the Council of Europe can do for us”, but “to look at what we can do to uphold the values and therefore contribute to the activities and mission of the Council of Europe.”
“Why are we here? Because we care about fundamental rights and freedoms, democracy and the rule of law,” he stressed, inviting all members “to see PACE as a vehicle for upholding the values we share. Common values are more important than our interests.”
“We, members of this Assembly, care about the fact that people are equal. Being equal is not being the same, this is why we are united in diversity. We care about human rights to be enjoyed by all citizens in all our 47 member States.”
“We care that people are free to enjoy and able to pursue their happiness. We care about the fact that no one should be above the law. This is what the rule of law is all about. Because we think, we care, we need to help people to decide. All members should be on board, this is what democracy is about,” he concluded.
Встреча Президентов Туркменистана и Азербайджана
21 января 2021 года состоялась встреча Президента Туркменистана Гурбангулы Бердымухамедова с Президентом Азербайджанской Республики Ильхамом Алиевым в режиме видеоконференции.
В ходе встречи Президенты подтвердили приверженность развитию дружественных отношений между двумя странами и народами основанных на принципах взаимоуважения и доверия, а также общности исторических, культурных и духовных ценностей.
Главы государств обсудили нынешнее положение и перспективы развития двусторонних связей в политической, торгово-экономической и культурно-гуманитарной областях.
Было отмечено, что важнейшим направлением туркмено-азербайджанского сотрудничества является взаимодействие по Каспию. В этой связи выделена значимость Конвенции о правовом статусе Каспийского моря, подписанной главами пяти прибрежных государств в августе 2018 года. Данный документ стал результатом многостороннего взаимодействия и началом нового этапа сотрудничества на Каспии, в том числе, в энергетической сфере.
Важно также отметить, что в ходе официального визита Президента Туркменистана Гурбангулы Бердымухамедова в Азербайджанскую Республику в августе 2017 года был подписан Меморандум о взаимопонимании между Правительством Туркменистана и Правительством Азербайджанской Республики о дальнейшем развитии сотрудничества в сфере энергетики. Данный документ способствовал продвижению энергетического сотрудничества между двумя странами.
Также обсуждалось сотрудничество в региональных и международных структурах. Президенты отметили, что обе страны выступают за упрочение всеобщего мира, стабильности и безопасности.
Президент Гурбангулы Бердымухамедов выразил признательность главе Азербайджана за поддержку ряда международных инициатив Туркменистана, нацеленных на укрепление международного мира и стабильности, а также подчеркнул результативность председательствования Азербайджанской Республики в Движении Неприсоединения. Подтверждена позиция Туркменистана в деле формирования глобальной системы энергетической безопасности, основанной на справедливых и прозрачных принципах, равноправном доступе к источникам энергии, которая была озвучена туркменской стороной на Саммите Движения Неприсоединения в октябре 2019 года.
Главы государств выразили приверженность дальнейшему укреплению туркмено-азербайджанских связей во благо двух стран и народов.
На встрече также присутствовали Министр иностранных дел Туркменистана Рашид Мередов и Министр иностранных дел Азербайджанской Республики Джейхун Азиз оглу Байрамов. По итогам переговоров глав государств, руководители внешнеполитических ведомств подписали Меморандум о взаимопонимании между Правительством Туркменистана и Правительством Азербайджанской Республики о совместной разведке, разработке и освоении углеводородного месторождения «Достлук» в Каспийском море.
«Этот документ стал результатом проведенной нашими странами большой многолетней работы, нацеленной на упрочение сотрудничества и взаимопонимания в энергетической сфере, раскрытие огромного обоюдного потенциала двух крупнейших энергетических держав, создание в регионе Каспийского моря самых благоприятных условий для развития устойчивой энергетики, широкого и взаимовыгодного международного партнерства» - сказал Президент Гурбангулы Бердымухамедов.
Президенты поздравили друга друга с подписанием исторически важного документа, призванного расширить партнёрство двух государств в области энергетики. Президент Гурбангулы Бердымухамедов подчеркнул, что решение назвать данное углеводородное месторождение на Каспии - «Достлук» - было обоюдным решением. «Достлук» в переводе с туркменского и азербайджанского языков означает – дружба.
Meeting of the Presidents of Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan
On the 21st of January 2021, a meeting was held between President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov and President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev via videoconferencing.
During the meeting, the Presidents reiterated commitment to the development of friendly relations between the two countries and peoples based on the principles of mutual respect and trust, as well as the community of historical, cultural and spiritual values.
The heads of state discussed the current standing and perspectives of the development of bilateral ties in political, trade-economic and cultural-humanitarian spheres.
It was stated that the most important components of Turkmen-Azerbaijani cooperation is the collaboration on the Caspian Sea. In this regard, the significance of the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea signed by the heads of five coastal states in August 2018 was noted. This document was a result of multilateral cooperation and the beginning of a new stage of collaboration in the Caspian, including the energy sphere.
It is also worthwhile to note that during the official visit of the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov to the Republic of Azerbaijan in August 2017, the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan on further development of cooperation in the area of energy was signed. This document has contributed to the advancement of the energy cooperation between the two countries.
Also, the cooperation in the regional and international structures was discussed. The Presidents noted that both countries stand for strengthening of universal peace, stability and security.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov expressed gratitude to the head of Azerbaijan for support of a number of international initiatives of Turkmenistan aimed at strengthening of international peace and stability, as well as underlined the efficiency of the Chairmanship of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Non-Aligned Movement. The standpoint of Turkmenistan in the process of forming the global system of energy security based on fair and transparent principles, equal access to the energy resources that was voiced by the Turkmen side at the Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in October 2019 was reconfirmed.
The heads of state expressed adherence to further strengthening of Turkmen-Azerbaijani ties for the sake of two countries and peoples.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan Jeyhun Aziz oglu Bayramov were also present at the meeting. Upon the outcomes of the negotiations held between the heads of state, the foreign ministers signed the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan on joint exploration, development and completion of the hydrocarbon field “Dostluk” in the Caspian Sea.
“This document is an outcome of multiyear work carried out by our countries which is aimed at strengthening of cooperation and mutual understanding in the energy sphere, unfolding grand mutual potential of two greatest energy powers, establishing in the region of the Caspian Sea the most favorable conditions for the development of stable energy, wide and mutually beneficial international partnership,” said President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
The Presidents congratulated each other on signing of the milestone document which is aimed at the expansion of partnership of two states in the area of energy. President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted that the decision to name this hydrocarbon field in the Caspian as “Dostluk” was a reciprocal resolution. “Dostluk” means friendship in Turkmen and Azerbaijani languages.
TURKMENISTAN AND FRANCE: ON THE WAY OF STRENGTHENING FRIENDSHIP AND MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL COOPERATION
On the 18th of January 2021, President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov had a working trip across the capital of Turkmenistan, during which he got acquainted with the state of affairs at the construction sites of Ashgabat where administrative and social facilities are being built.
It is vital to note that Turkmenistan efficiently cooperates with the “Bouygues Batiment International” company for many years which has made a notable contribution into the formation of new architectural image of Turkmenistan by constructing various administrative, social, cultural and sport facilities.
The cooperation with this and many other leading French companies is a reflection of close ties of Turkmenistan with the French Republic. The relations between the two countries are distinguished by high level of trade-economic and cultural-humanitarian cooperation.
In his recent letter addressed to the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, the President of the French Republic Emmanuel Macron has highly characterized the friendly and trustful relations existing between the two countries and expressed commitment to the strengthening of cooperation on a wide range, in particular in trade-economic, educational, research and cultural spheres.
The economic partnership between Turkmenistan and the French Republic consistently develops through bilateral mechanisms of cooperation. In March of 2010, the Turkmen-French Intergovernmental Commission on Economic Cooperation was established, in the framework of which the representatives of two countries consider the opportunities of widening economic, finance, trade, industry and scientific cooperation thus creating preconditions for the implementation of concrete projects.
The role of the Chamber of Commerce “France-Turkmenistan” established in November 2012 in promoting the trade and economic relations between the two countries is no less important. The Agreement on Cooperation that was signed during the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of France Laurent Fabius to Ashgabat in March of 2013 serves as a legal basis for the partnership between the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Turkmenistan and the Chamber of Commerce “France-Turkmenistan”.
The French companies are very much interested in advancing cooperation with Turkmenistan that on the way of its overall development and transformation has entrusted numerous grand projects particularly to them.
Many facilities have been built on the territory of Turkmenistan by the companies “Bouygues” and “Vinci Сonstruction”. The process of creation and launching of the first national communication satellite of Turkmenistan “Türkmen Älem 52,0 E” was carried out in cooperation with the French company “Thales Alenia Space”. The partnership with the leading French companies continues in the sphere of transport, communication, oil and gas sector, including the “Cifal”, “Eurocopter” (“EADS”), “Airbus”, “Schlumberger”, “Dresser-Rand” and others. It is also worthwhile to note that the cooperation with the French Business Confederation “MEDEF International” that includes hundreds of French companies continues.
In addition, Turkmenistan and France consistently expand the cultural and humanitarian ties, with special focus on the educational and research projects. The Agreement between the Government of Turkmenistan and the Government of the French Republic on the Activities of Cultural Centers was signed during the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov to France in July 2015. The given Agreement constitutes the legal basis for the activities of cultural and educational entities in Turkmenistan and France.
Special significance in this regard is assigned to the issue of learning and teaching French in Turkmenistan. The activities of the “French Institute” at the Embassy of France have significantly intensified. In the beginning it was opened in Ashgabat under the name of French Cultural Center of Jules Verne, while at present it continues to teach French to the residents of Turkmenistan in its status of the French Institute in Turkmenistan.
Presently, French is being taught in the Turkmen State University named after Makhtumkuli, the Turkmen National Institute of World Languages named after D. Azadi, the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, the International University for the Humanities and Development, as well as in a number of secondary schools of the country. Also, the arrangement of online advanced training courses for the teachers of French is planned to take place from the February till June 2021.
The popularization of French language in Turkmenistan has been reinforced by such organizations as “Campus France” (French National Information Center on the issues of obtaining higher education in France) and the “Alliance Française” (Cooperation in the area of education, language and culture, and popularization of French abroad). The collaboration between the scientific and educational institutes of the two countries continues within the Agreement on Cultural, Educational, Scientific and Technical Cooperation between the Governments of France and Turkmenistan.
The annually held events, such as the “International Francophonie Day” and “the Week of French and Francophonie” are vivid examples of high level of cooperation between the two countries in the area of culture.
Besides, starting from 1994, the Ministry of Culture of Turkmenistan has established close contacts with French archaeologists. In the framework of this cooperation, the French-Turkmen Archaeological Mission (MAFTUR) was established which carries out excavations at the Ulug-depe site in the Kaahka region. The joint preservation and restoration works, as well as the research of cultural layers of the given archaeological monument continue.
During the visit of the State Secretary of the Ministry of Europe and International Affairs of the French Republic Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne to Ashgabat, a special exhibition of unique artifacts took place. It is vital to note that the representatives of Turkmenistan continue discussing with the French side the issue of organizing an exhibition of the artifacts in the Louvre Museum of Paris.
Turkmen-French relations continue to strengthen for the sake of friendship, peace and sustainable development.