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President Ghani Meets His Turkman Counterpart in Ashgabat

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Saturday February 23, 2019

Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani held a one-on-one meeting with his Turkman counterpart Gurbanguly Berdimuhmedov Thursday last week in Ashgabat the capital of Turkmenistan, BNA report.
The two countries leaders spoke about expansion of mutual cooperation in terms of regional connectivity, economy, trade and transit, implementation of regional projects and war on terrorism. During the meeting, several agreements have been signed in front of the two countries leaders.
The signed agreement included:
Turkmenistan is working on implementation projects involving Afghanistan, including the construction of a railway line and a gas pipeline. The signed documents was a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Afghan National Archive and the National Institute of Language, Literature and Manuscript named as Makhtom Quli from the Turkmen academy of Sciences, railway project that inked between Afghanistan Railway Authority and Demirulari office of the Turkmen Ministry of Industries and Relations about Aqina-Andkhoy railway construction. Agreement on air-aviation services between the two countries, agreement on the two countries international border railway connection and a MoU on the two countries mutual customhouse cooperation, agreement on gas and petroleum and a document on the two sides strategic partnership for expansion of cooperation in political, economic and security areas as well as a joint statement, have also been signed between the two countries officials at the presence of the two countries leaders. After signing the agreements, the two countries leaders appeared on a news conference, with Turkman President saying both countries support each other in the international arena of rights equity, justice and non-interference in each other internal affairs in line with the United Nations, Islamic cooperation and economic cooperation. Turkman leader also said in his meeting with Afghan President, both sides were in favor of peace and security in the region and persisted on sustainable expansion of regional cooperation. “We have joint opinion in war on terrorism and as an impartial country, we want a political dialogue for peace in Afghanistan and ready for any cooperation in this regard,” said Berdimuhamadov. He said peace and security help practice joint plans and that they could launch good plans in the fields of energy, communication and transport with Afghanistan. “With the implementation of TAPI project, up to 12,000 job capacities would be provided in Afghanistan and the country would benefit an annual income of up to one billion US dollar. According to Turkman President, the first meeting of the Lapis Lazuli Road member countries’ ministers of transport would be held in May this year, and that his country was ready to issue more scholarships for the Afghan students to join the Turkmen universities. Meanwhile, the country’s President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani spoke on the related issues said the signed strategic accords have been a great step towards short-term, long-term and mid-term and more than this with no scheduled time. He noted that the positive policy of Turkman President has helped them show a successful cooperation and neighborhood pattern to the world. “Afghanistan which has long suffered from war has now turned to center of regional positive cooperation and the Lapis Lazuli Road was a sample of good relation between the participating countries and against the destructive relations. He said TAPI was not a project, but a global initiative measure and a corridor including gas, oil, fiber optic, transport, railway and power. Pointing to the terrorism threat, the President said it has turned into a danger for the region and the world and there should be an alternative to terrorism for the region and world.

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