Statement by Ambassador Tacan İldem, Permanent Representative of Turkey, in Response to the Report by Ambassador Ivo Petrov, Head of Centre in Ashgabat, 1055th Permanent Council

Tacan İldem 28.05.2015
Thank you Mr. Chairperson.

We are pleased to welcome Ambassador Petrov back to the Permanent Council and we thank him for his comprehensive presentation.

Turkey and Turkmenistan enjoy excellent bilateral relations and exemplary cooperation in a wide array of areas ranging from economy, commerce, energy and agriculture to health, tourism, culture and education just to name a few. These ties are based on a solid foundation provided by the close historic and cultural heritage enjoyed by our two nations.

The Centre’s report highlights a satisfactory level of cooperation with the local authorities. The numerous visits by OSCE high officials during the reporting period confirm this positive affirmation.

Turkey welcomes the Centre’s support to the remarkable progress achieved by Turkmenistan in areas belonging to all three dimensions. Furthermore, the increasing engagement and cooperation between the Centre and Turkmenistan in line with the needs and requests of the host country is commendable.

We support Turkmenistan’s commitment to a broad and constructive partnership with the OSCE and the participating States in the interest of peace, security, stability and sustainable development.

Mr. Chairperson,

Turkmenistan is an important neighbor for Afghanistan whose stability is a determining factor for peace and development in the region. As sustained regional engagement remains key for addressing common challenges, we are pleased with our cooperation with Turkmenistan also within the framework of the Istanbul Process. I wish to take this opportunity to note how we also appreciate Turkmenistan’s bilateral contributions towards the establishment of a more stable and prosperous Afghanistan.

I would also like to mention the trilateral meeting process that we have initiated along with Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan. Our Foreign Ministers have been meeting regularly with a view to exploring ways to further develop regional cooperation. As mentioned in the Centre’s report, the Ministers of Energy of Turkey, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan held a quadrilateral meeting on 1st of May in Ashgabat with the participation of European Commissioner Shefchovich. In October 2015, a Trilateral Summit Meeting at the level of Presidents will take place in Turkmenistan. We believe that this process, which will enable the Turkmen natural gas to be transferred to Europe over Turkey, will further consolidate the efforts directed to energy security of the region and Europe.

Mr. Chairperson,

We welcome Turkmenistan’s ongoing work on constitutional reforms which reflect the country’s determination to achieve universal values and standards. We encourage the Centre to further share OSCE’s experiences which may prove to be of use for Turkmenistan in this regard.

We support the cooperation between the Turkmen authorities and the OSCE Centre in the field of decriminalization reforms, border security and management, customs, counter-narcotics, aviation and travel document safety, fight against trafficking in human beings and good governance, and expect to see this cooperation continue even more productively in the years ahead.

We are pleased that Turkmenistan has been improving its capacity to address the issues of gender balance and women empowerment by adopting the National Action Plan on Gender Equality for the period of 2015-2020. We support endeavors to ensure equal participation of women in all aspects of Turkmen life.

In concluding, we would like to reiterate once more our support to the continuing work carried out by the Office and to wish Ambassador Petrov and his able team every success in their future endavours.

Thank you.