Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 27 October 2011 - Secretary-General's message to mark the 20th anniversary of Turkmenistan's Independence [Delivered by Mr. Jan Kubi?, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe]President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am pleased congratulate the Government and people of Turkmenistan on the occasion of your country's twentieth anniversary of independence.
Turkmenistan's rich history, traditions and culture date back centuries. The Turkmen people have demonstrated their strength and resilience at critical intervals throughout this period, including during the tragic earthquake of 1948.
While the modern nation first stayed within the boundaries of Russia and then the Soviet Union, in 1991, you made the choice to become a sovereign nation. Since then, Turkmenistan has passed many milestones. Next year, we will reach another: the twentieth anniversary of your country's accession to the United Nations.
Over these nearly two decades, Turkmenistan has become an important and valued Member State. UN agencies, programmes and funds are actively working in the country. Since 2007, Turkmenistan has hosted the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia. I was impressed by the Centre's activities as well as those of the Country Team when I visited Turkmenistan last year.
Turkmenistan's decision to adopt the status of permanent neutrality, which was formally recognized by the United Nations General Assembly in 1995, signalled the country's intent to pursue partnership across borders, and to reject confrontation and military power as part of its foreign policy. This has contributed to the promotion of peace and stability in Central Asia. Turkmenistan's support for the stabilization of neighbouring Afghanistan is also important. In addition, Turkmenistan promotes initiatives in fields such as energy security, disarmament and the environment, which can further contribute to regional and international cooperation.
I also welcome Turkmenistan's stated intention to develop a truly democratic society in which the country's progress is measured by the degree of rights and freedoms that each person can enjoy.
As Turkmenistan celebrates its twentieth anniversary of independence, I wish the country and its people a bright, prosperous and democratic future, and look forward to our continued close cooperation for many years to come.
Statements on 27 October 2011
- New York, 27 October 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at the UN Day Concert
- New York, 27 October 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks to the Fifth Committee of the General Assembly on the Proposed programme Budget for the Biennium 2012-2013
- New York, 27 October 2011 - Secretary-General's remarks at World Food Day Commemoration
- Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, 27 October 2011 - Secretary-General's message on the 50th anniversary of Mongolia's membership in the United Nations