Ashgabat, November 22, AZERTAC
President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov has hosted an official dinner in honor of President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev.
The heads of state addressed the event.
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev said:
- Dear Mr President.
Dear friends, ladies and gentlemen.
My official visit to fraternal Turkmenistan is coming to an end. From the very first minute of my stay on fraternal Turkmen soil, I have felt the warmth of the Turkmen people, I have felt the hospitality of the Turkmen people and, of course, first of all, the care of the President of Turkmenistan.
Yesterday I visited the Turkmen people's sacred places and saw again how talented these people are, how rich their history and culture are. The Turkmen people have lived, created and built on their own land for centuries. And we, the Azerbaijanis, have always stood my you. Our friendship and brotherhood have a centuries-old history, a history of mutual respect, mutual trust, mutual support and cooperation.
Turkmenistan has covered a very long road in recent years. When I visited various sites, sports facilities and the carpet museum yesterday, I did not recognize Ashgabat. It seemed to me that I was visiting a completely different city. In the short time of my absence, a city seems to have been created within the city. This, first of all, is an indicator of the power of the Turkmen state and its economic potential. First of all, it is a demonstration of the leadership's care about its people and the efforts it makes to create. Therefore, visiting Ashgabat today one can see exactly how Turkmenistan has developed over the recent years. This pleases us a lot. We, as friends and brothers, rejoice in your successes. For our part, we are doing and will continue to do everything for our countries to get even closer together.
Dear Gurbanguly Malikgulyyevich and I are doing a lot to strengthen the traditional bonds of brotherhood and friendship between our peoples. This is necessitated by history and the historically common ethnic roots of our peoples. This is also necessitated by the present-day reality. Our interests overlap today. We are working together to strengthen security in our region. We are actively interacting in the Caspian Sea. This year, as you know, the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea was signed, and our countries have made a great contribution to the signing of this Convention. We are dealing with environmental issues on the Caspian Sea. We are dealing with issues that are and will be of intercontinental importance, namely, the strengthening of the East-West transport corridor, a corridor that existed for many centuries, a corridor which was used by caravans and which allowed our ancestors to communicate with each other. The Great Silk Road ran through the territories of our countries, and, of course, we are making additional efforts to create a modern infrastructure for this corridor today. I have already mentioned this: it might seem that we agreed our actions but we actually didn't – we created a strong transport capacity on the territory of Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan at the same time. And by signing agreements today, we have fully combined this transport potential. Among the more than 20 documents we have signed, many directly or indirectly relate to issues of transport cooperation and transport security.
We are creating a completely different situation in the region where countries and peoples, our neighbors will derive a huge benefit from regional cooperation, from the operation of this corridor. This vital artery will feed our countries with new energy, create new jobs, lead to the creation of new industries, strengthen security and step up cooperation.
In other words, when analyzing and summing up the results of my visit, I can already see that it has gone beyond the framework of interstate relations. It is at least of regional importance, and given the expansion of our transport and logistical capabilities, it will be of Eurasian importance. The unification of transport corridors of Europe and Asia is already a reality. We create this reality. If Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan did not take steps along the path of development and creation, we there would be no talk about this today. If there were no timely investments generated by the economic potential of our countries, our geographical location would not be of great importance today. We have transformed our geography into a huge potential for our countries and for our neighbors. Therefore, I think that the significance of what we have agreed on will manifest itself for decades.
Most importantly, we have once again confirmed the strategic nature of our relations. During the visit of the distinguished President of Turkmenistan to Azerbaijan, we signed the Declaration on Strategic Partnership. Today we have confirmed through our actions that our relations are indeed of strategic nature. This is the way it should be between friends and brothers. Today we have raised our relations to the highest peak. I want to thank my esteemed friend, the President of Turkmenistan for his efforts to strengthen cooperation between our countries. I would like to wish dear Gurbanguly Malikgulyyevich continued success, good health and well-being, and the fraternal people of Turkmenistan happiness and prosperity. Thank you.
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