“Turkmenistan consistently implements a policy of good neighborliness, based on respect for national interests, the sovereignty, and independence of other countries. This combination allows the countries of the region to join forces to adequately confront the threats and challenges of the modern world. In this sense, it is impossible not to note the important role that neutral Turkmenistan plays in developing positive regional dynamics and creating conditions for deepening cooperation with its neighbors in the region and with Afghanistan”, said Kaha Imnadze, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, head of the Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia, speaking at an international conference in Ashgabat on the occasion of Independence Day.
The head of the UNRCCA noted that ensuring peace and security in Central Asia remains one of the main challenges for the region, given its difficult geopolitical position and proximity to areas of armed conflict and terrorist activity. In particular, the fight against terrorism, violent extremism, drug trafficking, and criminal activity remain one of the main challenges for the region.
Understanding and coping with geopolitical challenges, stability and security requires coordinated actions on the part of the states of the region, as well as active interaction with international communities, including within the framework of the UN, and other international platforms.
Among the international initiatives of Turkmenistan, Imnadze highlighted the initiative to declare this year the year of “International Dialogue as a guarantee of peace”.
As the head of the UNRCCA underlined the philosophy of the ideals of guaranteeing peace, aimed at uniting the efforts of the international community, strengthening the traditions of peaceful and trusting coexistence of the peoples of the world, directly echoes the initiative of the UN Secretary-General on a “New Agenda” for peace and the idea of holding a Summit of the Future in 2024.
SRSG separately focused on the important role of Turkmenistan’s priorities put forward at the current 78th session of the UN General Assembly, including other initiatives that are in tune with the “New Agenda” of the Secretary-General and correspond to the mandate of the Regional Center.
“Today, the desire of the Central Asian states to develop a regional dialogue based on trust, mutual understanding, equality, respect and consideration of each other’s interests has become an obvious factor,” Imnadze continued.
Thus, he mentioned that the 5th consultative meeting of the heads of Central Asian states in Dushanbe on 14 September made important political decisions to strengthen regional cooperation. In their speeches at the meeting, all the heads of state and the UN Secretary-General noted the importance of the Regional Center for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia, its role and potential in promoting regional cooperation and maintaining peace and security in the region.
In this context, the head of the UNRCCA once again assured of the center’s readiness to continue to work closely with all countries of the region and jointly resolve the most pressing issues through preventive diplomacy.
He expressed gratitude to the leadership of Turkmenistan for the comprehensive support of the center’s activities for more than 15 years and for initiating the third UN General Assembly resolution on the role of the regional center, which was adopted in February this year.
“The path we have travelled over these years has clearly proved that the concepts of neutrality and preventive diplomacy are indeed inseparable,” the SRSG stressed.
As part of the implementation of the preventive mandate, the UNRCCA interacts with the Central Asian States on the most pressing issues of regional cooperation in such important areas as the fight against violent extremism, terrorism, transboundary water use, glacier melting, ecology of the Aral Sea, gender equality, as well as increasing the role of youth and women in preventive diplomacy. ///nCa, 25 September 2023
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