A NUMBER OF BILATERAL DOCUMENT WERE SIGNED WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE “TURKMENISTAN AND THE UNITED NATIONS: COOPERATION FOR PEACE AND TRUST”
Today, on March 2, the International Conference “Turkmenistan and the United Nations: Cooperation for Peace and Trust” on the occasion of
the 29th anniversary of Turkmenistan’s UN membership, has started in the MFA of Turkmenistan.
Within the framework of the event online ceremony of signing the bilateral documents was held. In particular, the following documents were signed: Agreement between the Government of Turkmenistan and the United Nations Population Fund on Co-Financing, as well as Work Plan between the Ministry of Sport and Youth Policy of Turkmenistan and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) within the framework of the project “Strengthening mechanisms of youth participation in the implementation of the national youth policy and advancement of gender equality” for 2021.
Then Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov handed over to the Acting UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan, UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan Christine Weigand the Note verbale of the MFA of Turkmenistan officially announcing on behalf of the Government of Turkmenistan about the Resolution of the President of Turkmenistan on the approval of the procedure for visa-free entry to Turkmenistan of foreign citizens with UN passports.
As is known, that Resolution had been signed by the President of Turkmenistan on the 28th of February 2021, according to which, starting from March 2 this year, foreign citizens holding UN passports are allowed to come to Turkmenistan, stay in the country, leave it, and cross the territory of Turkmenistan in transit without visa.
Besides that, the document prescribed those foreign citizens – officers of the UN or its specialized structures, accredited by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, as well as their family members, are exempted from obtaining visa during the period of work in Turkmenistan.
The adoption of this Resolution is in line with the 1946 Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations.
The diplomatic mission of Turkmenistan in Tbilisi organizes Futsal Tournament
On April 5, the Embassy of Turkmenistan in Georgia held a futsal tournament dedicated to the World Health Day. The competition brought together representatives of the diplomatic corps, as well as Georgian athletes.
Those speaking during the tournament opening ceremony, it was noted that 2021, declared, according to the Resolution of the UN General Assembly, the International Year of Peace and Trust, was held in Turkmenistan under the motto “Turkmenistan - Homeland of Peace and Trust”.
It was also emphasized that comprehensive work is carried out in Turkmenistan to popularize the principles of healthy lifestyle, develop sports, and strengthen international cooperation in this area.
At the end of the tournament, commemorative prizes were awarded to the winners.
Development of partnership within the framework of the CIS discussed at the meeting of the CIS Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs
A meeting of the CIS Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs took place in Moscow.
Chairman of the CIS Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Belarus Vladimir Makei, Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, as well as State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova and Chairman of the CIS Executive Committee attended the meeting.
In a narrow format, the heads of the delegations exchanged views on the important issues of the international agenda and cooperation in the CIS format, as well as adopted the draft Address of the heads of the CIS member states to the peoples of the Commonwealth countries and the world community on occasion of the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945.
In the framework of the expanded meeting, the status of the implementation of the Action Programme to enhance partnership between the CIS Ministries of Foreign Affairs in 2020 was considered. In particular, it was noted that the partners managed to advance in many positions of the document, to maintain an active inter-ministerial dialogue on the key topics and coordinate efforts, interacting at leading international platforms.
Moreover, meeting participants approved the results of the multi-level inter-ministerial consultations held in 2020 within the framework of the Commonwealth.
The heads of the foreign-policy agencies instructed the CIS Executive Committee to submit the draft Plan of multi-level inter-ministerial consultations within the framework of the Commonwealth of Independent States for 2022 to the CIS Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs.
Two documents, the drafts of which were approved by the CIS Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs, will be submitted to the Council of CIS Heads of Government for consideration. Among them are the document on cooperation in the field of geodesy, cartography and remote sensing of the Earth and the document on the creation of a basic organization for operational and strategic training of officers of the armed forces.
The meeting participants also approved medium-term action plans for the implementation of CIS strategies - the development of cooperation in the field of physical culture and sports, international youth cooperation, as well as in the field of tourism.
Turkmen leader participates in the Summit of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States
President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has taken part as an honorary guest in unofficial Summit of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States (Turkic Council) in online format by the invitation of the first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Yolbasy, Honorary Chairman of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States Nursultan Nazarbayev.
It is worth to remind that this international organization was established in October 2009. At present time, the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Uzbekistan and the Republic of Turkey are the members of the Turkic Council. Hungary has a status of observer in this organization.
Steadily implementing foreign strategy, which is based on the principles of positive neutrality, peace-loving and constructive international cooperation, Turkmenistan successfully develops friendship, good neighborliness and wide beneficial partnership both in bilateral and multilateral formats.
Fruitful cooperation with Turkic-speaking countries, which peoples of which Turkmen nations is united by similarity of historical routes, cultural and spiritual traditions, which go deep to the centuries, is one of visual examples of this. In modern age, these good traditions receive new continuation and content providing favorable prepositions for further activation of multidimensional cooperation based on goodwill, significant potential and common wish of progress and prosperity.
It is remarkable that the head of Turkmenistan has been participating in high-level forums of Turkic Council several times. It proves an initiative position of our country in cooperation with regional and international structures, optimum use if existing capabilities for expansion of efficient trade and economic, humanitarian and cultural relations on wide geographic space, which is occupied by Turkic states in Eurasian continent.
President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Kasym-Jomart Tokayev, the first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Yolbasy, Honorary Chairman of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States Nursultan Nazarbayev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sadyr Japarov, President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayip Erdogan, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Prime Minister of Hungary Victor Orban, Secretary General of the Turkic Council Bagdad Amreyev took part in the current Summit.
The agenda of the forum included the subjects of expansion and strengthening of multidimensional interstate partnership, which meets the interests of common wealth and sustainable development.
The floor was given to the head of Turkmenistan. In his speech, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has confirmed the commitment of our country to wide constructive cooperation on international level in regional and international formats.
Addressing the heads of Turkic-speaking states, Turkmen leader expressed sincere gratitude to them for the intent to intensify friendly cooperation with Turkmenistan, for support given to our country in international arena, in particular under the UN, as well as for regular assistance in realization of its peaceful foreign course, which is based on thoughtful home policy.
This occurrence, which is typical for our nations and their national mentality, is based on the principles of friendship, fraternity, mutual support and solidarity, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov highlighted.
Taking this opportunity, the head of Turkmenistan expressed gratitude to the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Honorary Chairman of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States Nursultan Nazarbayev for the respect by inviting to current international forum as an honorary guest.
Turkmen leader has also expressed gratitude for optimum conditions made for the Summit, which is to continue developing friendly relations and beneficial partnership between Turkic-speaking states.
The head of the state has noted further that the agenda of the current forum, which is very important for bringing the relations between our countries, includes important subjects for definition of the vectors of coordinated activity of Turkic-speaking states.
In particular, current problems of present and long term perspective are discussed and number of important organizational issues are reviewed. In this regard, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has expressed confidence that decisions made by the outcomes of the meeting would be positive from all sides.
As is known, the head of the state continued, Turkmenistan made important initiatives on current problems of the agenda of international politics including initiative for provision of global and energy security, development of transport sphere, environment protection, intensification of trade and economic relations and other. Our state approaches practical implementation of these proposals in the world scale with full responsibility.
Speaking of this, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has focused attention of the participants of the Summit on some subjects of international significance.
Having outlined the provision of global energy security as one of immediate objectives of the present, the head of Turkmenistan noted that realizing the necessity of equal and fair use of the world energy resources, our country stands for the formation of reliable and stable system of their supplies to the world markets taking into account the interests of relevant parties.
In this context, Turkmenistan has proposed to establish negotiation processes on global energy security under international organizations, especially on the United nations level. Relative Resolutions developed in this field have been widely supported by the UN General Assembly. Turkmen side invites the states, which are interested in creating the system of global energy security, to take an active part in this beginning.
Turkmenistan will continue putting efforts in this direction and implement constructive international cooperation in bringing of oil and gas resources and power energy to the world markets for these purposes, the leader of the nation highlighted expressing confidence that it would be beneficial for all countries including Turkic-speaking states.
Having outlined transport and communication sphere as one of strategic spheres of the economy, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov stated that Turkic-speaking countries have a tremendous potential for joint implementation of efficient measures in this sector.
The head of the state noted that Turkmenistan undertakes measures for modernization of its modern transport and communication system and formation of transport and transit corridors of international and regional level, which would consolidates the efforts of international community.
For this purpose, the UN General Assembly has adopted three resolutions in the sphere of development of all modes of transport at the initiative of our country and support of the state members of this Summit. Big work on creation of global transport and transit corridors is made to implement these constructiveness oriented international documents.
In this regard, the confidence that fraternal Turkic-speaking states would take an active part in joint work aimed at further development of the systems of international transport provision.
Ecology and environment protection, which is current issues of life and society these days, are also among the priorities of international activity of Turkmenistan. Speaking of the Central Asian region, complicated situation with the Aral Sea raise the highest concern.
Continuing the subject, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has noted that this ecological catastrophe directly affects life and health of people living in the Aral Sea region and other countries. Therefore, liquidation of this disaster and mitigation of its negative impact have to be made immediately.
Turkmenistan actively works in ecological sphere and environment protection on global level. Our country was an author of the UN General Assembly on Cooperation between the United Nations Organization and International Fund for Saving of Aral Sea as well as proposed an initiative of development of the UN Special Program for the Aral Sea Basin. At present time, Turkmenistan closely cooperates with the world community, especially with the UN, in this sphere.
- I am confident that these necessary measures will support further intensification of cooperation between our countries, - Turkmen leader said also calling all parties to participate actively in implementation of the above-mentioned documents.
In this regard, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has expressed firm confidence that the goals of work carried out in the above-mentioned three directions and strategic vectors of international partnership would be reflected in the documents aimed at development of the relations between Turkic – speaking countries.
The head of Turkmenistan has also highlighted that big role in friendly and fraternal relations between state members of the Summit is given to culture, science and education as common spiritual and cultural heritage and values serve as a solid foundation for strengthening and intensification of interstate relations.
In this context, the President has spoken about the relevance to expand the range of programs and projects implemented under the TURKSOY, having proposed to carry out relevant work for spreading and popularization of works of famous poets and writers, outstanding cultural and art masters of the state members of the Forum in the world.
At present time, Turkmenistan has started preparation to the celebration of the 300th anniversary of Turkmen classic poet Magtumguly Fragi in 2024. Special attention is paid to international cooperation in this work, especially to joint activity with Turkic-speaking countries. Summing up what was said, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov expressed confidence in the need of further intensification of cooperation of the state members of the Summit in cultural sphere.
Continuing his speech, the head of Turkmenistan has focused attention of his foreign colleagues on such important subject as novel coronavirus pandemic, which has become a significant ordeal and presenting a serious threat to the whole world, for recovery of which huge efforts of entire world community are required. Our country was one of the first that undertook integrated measures for prevention of entry of COVID-19 to its territory.
At the same time, Turkmenistan has made international initiatives aimed at development of joint and coordinated solutions for countering the spread of the infection as well as actively participated in taking certain targeted measures in the region. In addition, our country supports the consolidation of efforts and potential of all states in combating modern challenges and threats. The leader of the nation noted that Turkic-speaking countries have accumulated certain experience in joint work in this direction.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has stressed that it would be right if in future, medical facilities and scientific and research institutes of the state members of the Summit would work on combating the coronavirus pandemic together with the world community.
Finishing his speech, the head of Turkmenistan has expressed firm confidence that the current Summit and matters reviewed at the session would support the expansion of equal and beneficial partnership as well as friendly and fraternal relations between the states and the nations.
The speech of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has been listened to by the participants of the Summit with big interest and attention.
In their speeches, the heads of the state members of the Forum have noted the importance of the Forum in the context of activation of cooperation between the states of the region and exchange of practice, made important initiatives on subjects related to provision of common security and stability, sustainable development of the economy of the state partners.
The participants of the Summit have expressed interest of Turkic states in expansion of multidimensional cooperation with Turkmenistan, which has advantageous geographic location in Central Asia and has recommended itself as reliable and responsible partner.
Georgia: Leading MEPs react to the refusal of the political parties to reach an agreement
In a joint statement, MEPs deplore that Georgia’s political leaders did not agree to EU mediator Christian Danielsson’s proposal and announce consequences in terms of EU-Georgia relations.
Following a meeting on 1 April with Christian Danielsson, personal envoy of European Council President Charles Michel for the EU-mediated political dialogue in Georgia, leading MEPs issued the following joint statement:
“We are deeply disappointed with the political leaders in Georgia for their inability to reach an agreement last Tuesday despite the best efforts deployed by the European Union to help put an end to the current political crisis. Both the ruling and the main opposition parties taking part in the discussions are to be blamed for this outcome and a special responsibility lies with the party in government.
We reiterate our strong support to Christian Danielsson’s tireless work and welcome the publication of the proposal he made to the political parties, which further increased the transparency of the mediation process. It is essential to rebuild confidence between political party actors. The content of this proposal is indeed the right way ahead for Georgia: ambitious electoral and judicial reforms, meaningful sharing of responsibilities in the Georgian Parliament and, most importantly, a solution on future elections and on two cases of politicised justice. This solution is politically balanced and respects both the rule of law and the international assessment of the 2020 elections. We also welcome the idea of a Jean-Monnet Dialogue process supported by the European Parliament, when the political situation allows.
Following the refusal from the political parties to compromise, Georgia’s leaders should not expect a return to business as usual from the European Union. The European Parliament in particular will call for consequences in terms of EU financial assistance, including both a suspension of further disbursements of and an increase in conditionality linked to EU Macro Financial Assistance and budget support programmes.
In the meantime, the adoption of ongoing electoral and judicial reforms in the Georgian Parliament requires broad political support and the need to fully implement the recommendations of OSCE/ODIHR and the Council of Europe’s Venice Commission. These reforms are key to rebuild trust. We call on the ruling party to ensure a genuinely inclusive process to avoid the further undermining of both future elections and the judiciary, as well as unnecessarily closing the door to a possible agreement in the future.
We call on Georgia’s leaders to take action immediately. The future of EU-Georgia relations is at stake.”
The increasing frictions between political parties in Georgia following the November 2020 parliamentary elections and the arrest of the opposition leader in mid-February have sparked a major political crisis in Georgia. The EU is actively engaged to help overcome the tensions among Georgia's political parties. Christian Danielsson, European Council President Charles Michel's personal envoy, conducted in Tbilisi two rounds of mediation among the parties and presented a proposal for a way ahead for Georgia. The European Parliament strongly supports his efforts.
Viola von Cramon-Taubadel (The Greens/EFA, Germany), lead member of the Democracy Support and Election Coordination Group for Georgia;
Sven Mikser (S&D, Estonia), European Parliament’s Standing Rapporteur on Georgia;
Michael Gahler (EPP, Germany), European Parliament’s Standing Rapporteur on Ukraine;
Petras Auštrevičius (Renew Europe, Lithuania), European Parliament’s Standing Rapporteur on Belarus.
The UN Human Rights Council adopted the Resolution on Cooperation with Georgia
On 24 March 2020, the UN Human Rights Council adopted the Resolution on Cooperation with Georgia.
The Resolution was presented by the Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister Lasha Darsalia, who spoke about the severe human rights situation in occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) regions.
Notwithstanding the repeated calls by the Human Rights Council and efforts of the High Commissioner, the Russian Federation -continues to prevent the international human rights monitoring mechanisms from entering both Russian-occupied regions of Georgia.
The Deputy Minister referred to the High Commissioner’s reports vividly depicting the deteriorating humanitarian and human rights situation on the ground, as well as the suffering of the conflict-affected people in both Georgian regions, the flagrant violations of the fundamental rights and the various forms of discrimination based on ethnic grounds, particularly affecting ethnic Georgians in both Georgian regions. The Deputy Minister underscored the negative impact of the closures of crossing points – in some cases imposed in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and noted that dozens died since the closure of the occupation line in September 2019 due to the refusing and delaying emergency evacuation.
According to the Deputy Minister, the report emphasizes that no one has been held accountable for the cases of arbitrary deprivation of life of ethnic Georgians that occurred between 2014 and 2019 and the lack of accountability therefore continued to contribute to climate of impunity, which could lead to further tensions and violence in both Georgian regions.
Speaking before the Council, Lasha Darsalia emphasized that the recent decision of the power exercising effective control in Tskhinvali region to prolong the illegal detention of Zaza Gakheladze for more than 12 years is yet another alarming example of manipulation with people’s fates.
Alarmingly, the Russian Federation continues to use the humanitarian and human rights issues for its far-reaching goal to put political pressure on the government of Georgia and further destabilize the situation on the ground.
The above-mentioned once again clearly demonstrates the urgent need of access for the OHCHR and other international human rights monitoring mechanisms to both Georgian regions.
The delegations of the EU, UK, Poland and the Czech Republic made statements in support for Georgia calling on the Council members to vote for the Resolution initiated by Georgia.
In the Resolution adopted on 24 March, the UN Human Rights Council reaffirms its commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders. The UN Human Rights Council recognizes with appreciation the efforts of the Government of Georgia to strengthen democracy, the rule of law and the promotion and protection of human rights.
The UN Human Rights Council welcomes the cooperation of the Government of Georgia with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as with the special procedures of the Human Rights Council.
The Resolution expresses serious concern over the human rights and humanitarian situation in the occupied regions of Georgia with special emphasis on reported kidnappings, arbitrary detention, interference with property rights, restrictions on access to education in one’s native language, free movement and residence, as well as continued discrimination on the grounds of ethnic origin in both regions.
The Resolution expresses serious concern at the continuous process of installation and advancement of barbed wire fences and different artificial barriers along the occupation line in Abkhazia, Georgia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Georgia and adjacent areas, including during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
The Resolution expresses serious concern that despite the Secretary-General’s appeal for an immediate global ceasefire, the situation of human rights has further deteriorated in both Georgian regions, particularly owing to growing violations and restrictions on humanitarian access,
The Resolution expresses serious concern also at the negative consequences of the prolonged closure of the so-called crossing points and the increasing restrictions on freedom of movement, particularly the denial of medical evacuations by the authorities exercising effective control in both regions, which has contributed to a number of deaths and the further isolation of the regions, thereby aggravating the humanitarian and socioeconomic situation on the ground which has been compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Resolution expresses serious concern further at the lack of accountability for unlawful killings of ethnic Georgians committed in the period from 2014 to 2019, which continues to contribute to impunity in both Abkhazia, Georgia and the Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Georgia.
The Resolution recognizes the importance of the Geneva International Discussions established on the basis of the ceasefire agreement of 12 August 2008 as an instrument for addressing security, stability, human rights and humanitarian issues on the ground.
It needs to be highlighted that the Resolution takes note of the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights, which holds Russia accountable for the violation of international law norms and fundamental human rights during the August 2008 war, as well as for the occupation of and effective control over the Georgian territories.
The Resolution expresses concern that internally displaced persons and refugees continue to be deprived of the right to return to their homes in a safe and dignified manner.
The document expresses serious concern at the repeated denial of access to international and regional monitors, including the United Nations human rights mechanisms, to both Georgian regions and calls on the authorities exercising effective control in those regions to grant them unimpeded access.
The Resolution requests the High Commissioner to present to the Human Rights Council an oral update and a written report on the follow-up to the present resolution.
MFA of Georgia