On April 15, 2021, the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust” was held in the capital of Turkmenistan, Ashgabat in participationon of the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
The high-level event took place in the new Conference Centre of Turkmenistan that was officially opened in the same day by the President of Turkmenistan.
The event was attended by the leadership of Parliament (Mejlis), Deputies Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan, heads of the ministries and departments of the country, chiefs of the diplomatic missions and representative offices of international organizations in Turkmenistan, rectors of the institutions of higher education of Turkmenistan, heads and representatives of local mass media, as well as the foreign journalists accredited in Turkmenistan.
The heads and representatives of respected international and regional organizations, including the UN, OSCE, CIS and others took part in the International Conference via videoconferencing.
In his opening speech, the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov noted the significance of the given Conference that is taking place in the International Year of Peace and Trust. He expressed firm commitment of Turkmenistan to the development of peaceful, friendly ties between countries and people. The President also called for the expansion of collaboration with the international partners.
Then the participants heard the video statement of the Secretary General of the OSCE Helga Schmid who told about the active work of Turkmenistan in the process of upholding the sustainable development, the culture of peace and trust. She also highlighted the role of Turkmenistan in the development of economic connectivity in the region and beyond it.
Then the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Commonwealth of Independent States – Executive Secretary Sergey Lebedev addressed the conference via videoconferencing. He particularly underlined that in the person of Turkmenistan, the international community has gained a reliable and peace-loving partner and the state confirms in practice its vital input in the development of international cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and trust.
Also via videoconferencing gave her speech, the Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations, Executive Secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Olga Algayerova. She noted the important role of Turkmenistan in the promotion of constructive regional and international dialogue, in particular through the collaboration in the area of green economy, trade, transport, ecology and others.
About the significance of peaceful and open international cooperation to which Turkmenistan calls, the Executive Secretary of the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), Under-Secretary-General Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana has spoken in her video statement. She underlined the importance of mutual support in the process of resisting the common threats and challenges.
In her speech, the Acting UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan, UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan Christine Weigand told about the active cooperation of Turkmenistan with the UN from the perspective of attaining the Sustainable Development Goals that is inseparably connected to maintenance of peace and trust between countries and people.
Also, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to Turkmenistan Aleksandr Blokhin gave a speech at the Conference. The diplomat said that “the peace and trust is what is extremely needed today to the people and states of the whole Globe and their priority scope in the Turkmen foreign policy has gained many practical confirmations and rightly valued by the world community.”
In his speech, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to Turkmenistan Matthew Stephen Klimov presented his vision of the notions of peace and trust. He underlined that to attain peace it is necessary to build and maintain trust. The Ambassador added that this is what Turkmenistan is calling for through its positive neutral policy.
Speaking at the Conference, the Head of the OSCE Center in Ashgabat Natalya Drozd stated that by initiating the UN General Assembly Resolution on declaring the International Year of Peace and Trust, “the Government of Turkmenistan has again demonstrated its commitment to the policy of permanent neutrality, the main priorities of which is the affirmation of the culture of dialogue and reinforcement of mutual trust between various states.”
The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the European Union to Turkmenistan Diego Ruiz Alonso also spoke at the Conference. The diplomat noted the role of Turkmenistan in the promotion of peaceful and trustful relations between countries and people that is reflected in numerous projects of economic and humanitarian nature.
In the end of the official part of the Conference, the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov expressed gratitude to participants for active involvement and wished to all peace and wellbeing.
Then the ceremony of signing international documents took place and the International Conference continued in plenary sessions. /// MFA Turkmenistan, 15 Apr
Ashgabat, 15 April 2021. Today the Government of Turkmenistan has convened the High-level International Conference titled «International Cooperation of Independent and Permanent Neutral Turkmenistan for Peace and Trust». It is devoted to marking the International Day of Peace and Trust.
The conference was preceded by the Grand opening ceremony of the International Congress Centre with the participation of the President of Turkmenistan who addressed the participants of the Conference.
The high-level speakers representing the Government, United Nations, European Union, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the Commonwealth of Independent States and diplomatic missions in the country presented their vision of ways to ensure peace and trust through delivery of people-centered programs, inclusion, and strengthening cooperation.
“I strongly believe that the implementation of the main principle of “leaving no one behind”, which is embedded in the 2030 agenda for sustainable development, is intrinsically linked to the concepts of Peace and Trust”, noted Ms. Christine Weigand, UN Resident Coordinator a.i..
As part of the High-level Conference the following documents were signed between the Government of Turkmenistan and international organizations: MOU between the Ministry of Education and the Office of the OSCE High Commissioner on Minorities on multilingual and multicultural cooperation; MOU between Turkmenistan and UNESCO on the plan of action for 2021-2023; Agreement between the Ministry of Healthcare and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and UNICEF on the Regional Nutrition Platform.
The high-level forum was followed by three parallel plenary sessions on Peace and Security, Sustainable Economy and Environment, and Rule of Law and Social Justice. The speakers for the sessions both from the Government and international partners renewed the mutual commitment to work together towards building peace and progress through fostering multilateralism built on mutual understanding, respect for international law and genuine aspiration to maintain peace and security, observance of human rights and promotion of sustainable development.
In conclusion, the participants agreed that such discussions give a decisive impetus for even more intense and fruitful cooperation in achieving common development objectives for peace and wellbeing for all. /// UN in Turkmenistan
Plenary session on the topic of “Cooperation for the sake of Peace and Security” was held in the framework of the international conference
In the framework of the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust” that took place on the 15th of April 2021 in Ashgabat, a plenary session on the topic of “Cooperation for the sake of Peace and Security” was held. The event was held in hybrid format in the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan.
The moderator of the session was the Deputy Head of the UN Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia Philippe Saprykin.
The Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov, Director of the UN Regional Office for the Coordination of Sustainable Development Gwi Yeop Son, UN Women’s Global Chief of Women, Peace and Security Paivi Kaarina Kannisto, Regional Representative for Central Asia, UNODC Ashita Mittal, IOM Regional Coordinator for Migration for Central Asia, Head of IOM Missions in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan Zeynal Hajiyev, Head of the Regional Office for Central Asia, ICRC Sangeeta Koenig, Regional Representative for Central Asia, UNDRR Abdurahim Muhidov and the Subregional Coordinator of Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) Viorel Gutu gave speeches at the session.
The issues of expanding cooperation on sustenance of security and stability on the regional and international levels were thoroughly discussed.
In his speech, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan expressed clear position of Turkmenistan in the processes of sustaining peace and security through political and diplomatic methods, preventive diplomacy and strengthening of cooperation between the relevant departments of the countries of the region. Special emphasis was made on the work of Turkmenistan on strengthening regional and interregional collaboration, promotion of dialogue in the framework and under the auspices of the United Nations and other large and respected international organizations.
The participants discussed the matters of Afghanistan where active participation of the Turkmen side in the implementation of large-scale infrastructural projects on the territory of Afghanistan was highlighted. The significance of widening humanitarian cooperation in the region was underlined.
The parties discussed the collaboration on the platform of the UN on the implementation of joint projects and programs, including those aimed at the resolution of the migration issues.
The joint efforts in the area of countering crime and drug trafficking, responding to emergencies, including the decrease of the natural disasters risks were discussed. /// MFA Turkmenistan, 15 Apr
At the session in Turkmen State University named after Magtymguly the significance of ecology in trade-economic cooperation was discussed
On April 15, 2021, the second plenary session “Significance of ecology in trade-economic cooperation” of the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust” had been held at the Turkmen State University named after Makhtumkuli. The Permanent Representative of the United Nations Development Programme Office in Turkmenistan Natia Natsvlishvili moderated the session.
The session was attended by the Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan G.Mushshikov, Head of Subregional Office for Central Asia, UN Environmental Programme Aidai Kurmanova, General Delegate to Eurasia, IRU Vadim Zakharenko, Director of the Office for Safe Labor for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, ILO Olga Koulaeva, Executive Director of the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia Zafar Makhmudov and other heads of authoritative international organizations, as well as faculty and students of the university.
During his speech, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization Daren Tang noted that this International Conference creates opportunity for everyone to exchange views on current and future tasks connected with peace, security and sustainable development. He also mentioned the importance of the development of the creative skills in science, technology and innovations for all-round well-being and to reach Sustainable development goals.
Chief of the Regional Coordination Division for Europe and Central Asia, of the UN Industrial Development Organizations Jacek Cukrowski informed about UNIDO activities in Turkmenistan, underlined the role of the Joint Declaration signed in 2015, which includes such priority directions as support of small and middle enterprises, strengthening the national infrastructure of quality, promotion of investments and assistance to technology development.
Regional Director, UN Office for Projects Service Freya von Groote in her speech noted that supports strategic goals of development of Turkmenistan within the new Framework Programme of the UN on cooperation in the field of sustainable development. She also told about the activities of UNOPS on strengthening of the national system of health protection of Turkmenistan.
Regional Coordinator for Central Asia, UNCTAD Dmitry Godunov informed on the activities of UNCTAD in Turkmenistan and noted the importance of the automated system of processing of customs data and the system of “a single window” in order to enhance transit capacity, stimulation of expansion of national transport and logistics infrastructure. /// MFA Turkmenistan, 15 Apr
Within the framework of the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust”, on April 15, 2021, the third plenary session “International Cooperation on Humanitarian Issues” was held at the International University for humanities and development. The Rector of the given University Esen Aydogdiyev moderated the session.
The speeches of the Speaker of Parliament of Turkmenistan Gulshat Mammedova, Director of the UNICEF Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia Afshan Khan, Deputy Director of the Office for Europe and the CIS, UNDP Agi Veres, OHCHR Regional Representative for Central Asia Ryszard Komenda, Regional Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia, UNFPA Alanna Armitage, Head of the Regional Office for Central Asia, IFRC Bayarmaa Luntan, Regional Representative for Central Asia, UNHCR Hans Friedrich Schodder and Head of the UNESCO Cluster Office in Tehran Cvetan Cvetkovski were listened at the meeting.
During the meeting, the participants emphasized that Turkmenistan considers the development of humanitarian cooperation as the most important task of interaction within the framework of regional and international organizations, including with specialized UN structures. Actively interacting with international humanitarian organizations, the state contributes to the efforts of the world community, taking effective measures to provide assistance to migrants, refugees, stateless persons and protect their rights. In this context, the importance of the Inter-departmental Commission on the Implementation of International Obligations of Turkmenistan in the area of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law was emphasized.
Noting the productivity of the work done in Turkmenistan in recent years in this direction, the participants emphasized that the country takes an active position in matters of humanitarian cooperation, putting forward specific initiatives aimed at ensuring prosperity in the regional and global dimensions, achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Expressing gratitude for the invitation to take part in this conference, the meeting participants noted the high level of cooperation of Turkmenistan in the field of humanitarian action, both in a bilateral and multilateral format. /// MFA Turkmenistan, 15 Apr
A roundtable was held on the results of the international conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust”
On April 15, in Ashgabat, the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust” successfully completed its work.
Following the event, a round table was held at the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign affairs of Turkmenistan, where the key aspects of the conference were announced. The Rector of the International University for the Humanities and Development Esen Aydogdyev acted as a moderator.
The event was attended by the Rector of the Institute of International Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan J.Gurbangeldyev, the Rector of the Turkmen State University named after Makhtumkuli B.Orazdurdiyeva, Pro-rector of the International University for the Humanities and Development N.Shihliyev, Deputy Head of the UN Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia F.Saprykin, Acting UN Resident Coordinator in Turkmenistan, UNICEF Representative in Turkmenistan C. Weigand, Young Ambassadors of SDGs, as well as faculty and students of a number of universities.
There was noted that the International Conference “Global Cooperation of Independent, Neutral Turkmenistan for the sake of Peace and Trust” has become an effective interactive platform, during which each participant, on behalf of the organization he represents, outlined the vision of the importance of peace and trust in international affairs. An active exchange of views took place on expanding partnership in this direction.
The merits of the President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov in promoting peace and building trust between countries and nations, which are laid down in the concept of holding the International Year of Peace and Trust, were especially highlighted. /// MFA Turkmenistan, 15 Apr
Within the framework of the forum “International cooperation of independent, permanently neutral Turkmenistan in the name of peace and trust”, a ceremony of signing international documents was held.
Among them: Memorandum of Cooperation between the Government of Turkmenistan and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization for 2021-2023; Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the International Energy Agency on cooperation in the energy sector; Memorandum of Cooperation between the Ministry of Education of Turkmenistan and the Office of the OSCE High Commissioner for National Minorities on Language and Cultural Diversity; Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to promote the improvement of maternal and child nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus by hosting and leveraging a regional platform for capacity development and cooperation in nutrition. /// TDH, 15 Apr
Turkmenistan became the chair of the Regional Platform for Development and Partnership for Nutrition in Central Asia and the Caucasus for the next two years.
According to the office of the UNICEF Representative in Ashgabat, the relevant Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Turkmenistan and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) was signed on the sidelines of a high-level international conference on peace and trust, held in the Turkmen capital on Thursday.
The document was signed by the Minister of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan Nurmukhammed Amannepesov and UNICEF Representative in Ashgabat Christine Weigand.
The platform is a multi-stakeholder partnership mechanism to develop nutrition management and food system capacity in 8 countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia).
Christine Weigand said at the memorandum signing ceremony that “UNICEF thanks the Government of Turkmenistan for its commitment to prioritizing child nutrition and food security in the region.”
This regional initiative was launched in November 2014, when member states of the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) committed to eliminating all forms and causes of malnutrition. These countries have developed a shared vision of collective action to achieve the goals of SDG 2 (end hunger and increase food security) and SDG 3 (improve health and reduce the burden of noncommunicable diseases).
The UN General Assembly reaffirmed ICN2’s call to action with a resolution and proclaimed 2016-2025 as the UN Decade for Action on Nutrition. Thus, the UN has set a time frame to address the challenges posed by all forms of malnutrition in the world. /// TDH, 15 Apr
Speech by the President of Turkmenistan at the International Conference on Cooperation for Peace and Trust
Dear Conference participants!
First of all, let me warmly welcome you to the new Palais des Congrès. This majestic building is intended to become a hospitable and convenient meeting place for a multi-format discussion of topical issues of international life, development of joint constructive approaches to them based on goodwill, responsibility and constructive interaction.
It is symbolic that it is in this building that we are holding an event on such an important topic for the first time with the participation of representatives of various states, international organizations, well-known politicians and public figures.
I am grateful for your willingness to contribute to its success. We highly appreciate and value your opinions and judgments, and we are confident that they will help all of us in the implementation of the further positive world agenda.
As you know, at the initiative of Turkmenistan, 2021 was proclaimed by the UN General Assembly as the International Year of Peace and Confidence. This decision reflects the desire of the Community of Nations to give due constructive impulses to the course of interstate cooperation, to provide conditions for building respectful relations based on the norms of international law and the UN Charter.
Today these goals are objectively in demand and require concerted action.
For neutral Turkmenistan, maintaining stability, trust and predictability of international relations based on peace and security is the top priority of the foreign policy course.
Acting in this vein, our country proposes to actively use the mechanisms of neutrality, its peacekeeping potential for the political and diplomatic solution of existing problems, prevention and timely response to threats of regional and global nature.
I am convinced that neutrality as a political and legal category is also in demand today in combining efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, effectively countering global challenges – international terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking. Recently, new threats have been added to them – cybercrime, legal nihilism, attempts to dilute the role and functions of the UN, and the unfair use of human rights issues.
In this context, in our opinion, the steps proposed by Turkmenistan to translate the multilateral dialogue on these topics into a positive channel are seen as relevant.
In particular, in recent years, our country has consistently proposed specific measures to enhance cooperation, speaking at the UN with draft General Assembly Resolutions on strengthening international peace and security in the field of sustainable energy, transport, ecology, environmental protection, and in a number of other areas.
Significantly, these initiatives are finding growing understanding and unanimous support from the Community of Nations.
An increasingly positive attitude in the world towards the prospects of using instruments of neutrality is also important.
The basic principles of neutrality – adherence to peace, good neighborliness, cooperation and mutual understanding, negotiated methods of solving emerging problems, rejection of military force, and respect for universally recognized international legal norms – are becoming more and more consonant with the interests and aspirations of the international community and its institutions. It is no coincidence that several years ago, at the initiative of Turkmenistan, a new date appeared in the world political calendar – International Day of Neutrality, celebrated on December 12.
The support of neutrality is clearly evidenced by the unanimous and repeated adoption by the UN General Assembly of a number of Resolutions, including “On the permanent neutrality of Turkmenistan”, “The role and significance of the policy of neutrality in maintaining international peace, security and sustainable development.”
A characteristic indicator in this context was the fact that more than 20 states have already joined the Group of Friends of Turkmenistan’s Neutrality in the name of peace, security and development, created within the UN framework.
Our country is developing a UN Code of Rules on the effective application of the principles of neutrality in the settlement of international issues.
The events held last year within the framework of the 25th anniversary of the international recognition of the neutral status of Turkmenistan became an important contribution to the development of the theory and practice of neutrality, expanded the applied interest in this model of interstate cooperation.
We are proud that Turkmen neutrality rightfully acts today as a reliable guide to the UN’s strategic goals in Central Asia, in resolving the situation in Afghanistan, regional and international multifaceted cooperation in the economic and humanitarian spheres.
In this context, in the current International Year of Peace and Trust, Turkmenistan invites the world community to focus and place special emphasis on the following major areas:
– strengthening international law, affirming the leading role of the UN in maintaining global peace and security;
– counteraction to legal nihilism and neglect of generally recognized international legal norms;
– maintaining and strengthening strategic stability and supporting its integral part – the processes of disarmament, refusal to build up arsenals of weapons, primarily weapons of mass destruction;
– an uncompromising fight against international terrorism and other types of cross-border organized crime.
Here, the decisive factor is the widespread implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy;
– support and strengthening of preventive diplomacy as an important tool for preventing disputes and conflicts, their timely neutralization;
– providing energy, transport, water, food, information and cyber security, and solving the problems of refugees and migrants.
Of course, the most urgent task this year is to unite international efforts on solidarity humanistic principles to combat the coronavirus pandemic and eliminate its consequences.
Undoubtedly, these and other major tasks of the global agenda can be fulfilled under one fundamental condition – the presence of goodwill, mutual trust, responsibility and foresight, respect and equality.
We are convinced that these concepts should be filled with real content, include concrete efforts by all states without exception, and act as an ideological basis for their joint work within the framework of international and regional structures.
The existing system of global peace and security, based on the UN Charter, has proved its viability and compliance with the true aspirations of mankind for 75 years.
Yes, it can be improved, supplemented and enriched with new forms and models in line with objective requests and modern development trends.
But in no case should it be questioned and, moreover, attempts to break it. The consequences here can be very serious, and I think that we are all well aware of this.
Therefore, Turkmenistan always firmly stands on the fact that the UN should remain the main international structure with universal legitimacy, the supporting frame and guarantor of maintaining universal peace and security, ensuring the legitimate rights and interests of any states – regardless of their size, economic potential, form of government, etc. other factors.
Our position as a neutral country, our view of the world and our place in it are based on respect for all peoples, their sovereign choice of development paths, political and socio-economic models, the content and direction of relations with other states.
This is highly appreciated by our partners, allows Turkmenistan to stably and consistently develop friendly, equal ties with dozens of countries on the planet, maintain a high level of mutual understanding, effective economic cooperation with them, and take an active part in the work of international institutions.
Within the framework of this Conference, you will discuss a wide range of issues. I am convinced that this will be a confident dialogue of like-minded people united by common aspirations to help achieve the goals of progress and creation.
Turkmenistan always welcomes guests with an open heart, and we would like communication in this format to take place in our country on a regular basis, with a wide thematic coverage.
We are ready to provide all the necessary support to this, providing the most favorable political and organizational conditions.
Once again I ask you to accept my gratitude for your participation and wish you interesting and effective work. /// TDH, 15 Apr
/// Report compiled by nCa, 16 April 2021