Guterres praises Turkmenistan’s ‘neutrality policy’ in difficult times — Global Issues


The Secretary General expressed his appreciation to Turkmenistan for hosting the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia in Ashgabat, and praised Turkmenistan’s generosity in granting citizenship to stateless persons.

He also thanked the President for providing a new building to the UN country team.

Regional challenges

Later on a press conference, Mr Guterres told journalists that “Turkmenistan plays a very important role in international relations”, particularly in cooperation with the UN.

“In these difficult times, I commend Turkmenistan’s policy of neutrality,” he said.

The Secretary-General is on an official visit to Central Asia, which includes Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.

Mr Guterres last visited the region seven years ago. Since then it has been hit by numerous global challenges, he said, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, rising geopolitical tensions and the worsening climate crisis.

He was encouraged that despite these challenges, relations between Central Asian countries have improved and regional cooperation has deepened, underlining the important role played by Turkmenistan.

He said the region still faces many obstacles to development, including water scarcity, land degradation, natural disasters and lack of adequate connectivity.

“The solutions are interconnected and can be found through dialogue and cooperation, and Turkmenistan plays a central role in that cooperation,” he said.

UN commitment

The Secretary-General noted that the establishment of the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy demonstrates the organization’s commitment to Central Asia.

“With the involvement of all five Central Asian countries, the Regional Centre will continue to provide a forum for finding joint solutions, particularly in the areas of implementation of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in Central Asia and management of natural resources for the benefit of all,” he said.

Climate action and sustainable development

The Secretary-General also took the opportunity to stress that Turkmenistan, like other countries in Central Asia, is facing the consequences of the growing climate crisis.

He stressed the need for “much more ambitious climate action and emissions reductions if the world is to stay within 1.5 degrees of global warming.”

Mr Guterres further noted that Turkmenistan has taken “important steps” towards achieving some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adding that the UN country team is working with the government to identify gaps and risks.

“Sustainable, inclusive development can be greatly enhanced by respect for the full spectrum of human rights – economic, social, political, cultural and civil,” he added.

In this context, the Secretary-General encouraged Turkmenistan to continue to cooperate with the UN human rights mechanisms and recommendations.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top