President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov chaired a meeting of the CIS Council of Heads of State in Ashgabat.
To meeting was attended by President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev, President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, President of Kazakhstan Kasym-Zhomart Tokayev, President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov, President of Moldova Igor Dodon, President of Russia Vladimir Putin, President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Prime Minister of Armenia Nikol Pashinyan.
Having approved the rules of procedure and agenda of the meeting, the heads of state held talks in a narrow format in which they discussed the topical issues relating to development of cooperation within the CIS and the current state of the world. The leaders of the CIS countries focused on the problems relating to ensuring peace and security, the situation in Afghanistan, expansion of partnerships in the economic sphere and humanitarian issues.
During the narrow format talks, the sides discussed the term of office of the Chairman of the CIS Executive Committee. In this regard, the President of Turkmenistan said that Sergey Lebedev, whose terms of office expire this December, has served in the current role for many years. According to the Turkmen leader, Sergey Lebedev is dedicated to his work, demonstrates great responsibility and does a lot for the preservation and development of the CIS. Berdimuhamedov emphasized that the Russian Federation proposed to extend Lebedev’s terms of office for another three-year period, and the heads of delegations supported this proposal.
After announcing the agreed decision, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov congratulated Sergey Lebedev on behalf of all those present on extending his term of office for another three years.
Then, the meeting of the CIS Council of Heads of State continued in an extended format, at which the President of Turkmenistan delivered a speech. He noted that the purpose of the current meeting was to give new impetus to the work of the CIS, bring it to a level that would meet the realities and trends of modern development, ensure the CIS capacity to adequately and timely respond to changes in the international and regional agenda.
The head of state informed his CIS colleagues that next year Turkmenistan would celebrate the 25
anniversary of recognition by the UN of the country’s permanent neutrality.
“Over the years, thanks to its proactive position, our state has repeatedly demonstrated the effectiveness of the practical application of the principles of neutralism in addressing various international problems,” Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov emphasized. According to him, on many occasions Turkmenistan’s neutral status has been a factor in strengthening regional and international stability and security, developing multilateral economic and humanitarian cooperation.
According to the head of state, the advantages of neutrality as a political and legal category capable of becoming an effective tool in the UN diplomatic arsenal will be discussed at an international conference on peace, security and sustainable development in Ashgabat on 12 December 2020. Taking the opportunity, the Turkmen leader invited all CIS heads of state and heads of delegations to participate in this conference and other events celebrating the 25
anniversary of Turkmenistan’s neutrality.
Speaking to the summit participants, President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov announced that according to the decision made by the CIS Council of Heads of State at the meeting in the narrow format the Republic of Uzbekistan would assume chairmanship of the CIS beginning January 1, 2020. Then, the Turkmen leader gave the floor to President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev, who presented the concept of his country’s chairmanship of the CIS and outlined its main goals and objectives.
Then, the President of Turkmenistan announced his decision to confer the Order of Bitaraplyk (Neutrality) on the CIS Executive Committee Chairman, Sergey Lebedev. The Chairman of the CIS Executive Committee was awarded the high decoration for his great personal contribution to strengthening the permanent neutrality of independent Turkmenistan, his active participation in the international life and his great services to strengthening friendship and cooperation between countries and peoples.
Then, there was held a ceremony of presenting the medal of the CIS Council for Humanitarian Cooperation and the CIS Interstate Fund for Humanitarian Cooperation (IFHC) “For Merits in Development of Humanitarian Cooperation” to President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov. The medal was handed over to the Turkmen leader by the Chairman of the Board of the IFHC, Ambassador of Azerbaijan to Russia Polad Bulbul Oglu; the Co-chair of the IFHC board, Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for international cultural cooperation Mikhail Shvydkoy; and Executive Director of the IFHC Anatoly Iksanov.
The awarding ceremony was followed by the ceremony of signing the outcome documents of the summit of the CIS Heads of State. The CIS leaders adopted the Declaration on Strategic Economic Cooperation of the CIS Countries. They also adopted the Address by the Heads of the CIS countries to the peoples of the CIS and the international world community in connection with the 75
anniversary of the Victory of the Soviet people in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 and a number of other documents.
The Ashgabat Summit results were summed up at a press conference with participation of the Chairman of the CIS Executive Committee, Executive Secretary Sergey Lebedev, and the Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov.
On the same day, the President of Turkmenistan hosted an official reception in honor of the heads of delegations of the CIS countries. Later, the distinguished guests left Ashgabat.