PRESS BRIEFING BY AMY QUANTRILL, DEPUTY SPOKESPERSON FOR GENERAL ASSEMBLY PRESIDENT VOLKAN BOZKIR
GENERAL ASSEMBLY PRESIDENT TRAVEL TO CENTRAL ASIA
- The President of the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Volkan Bozkır, started an official visit to Uzbekistan today.
- The President met with H.E. Shavkat Mirziyoyev, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The Presidents had an in-depth discussion on peace and stability in Afghanistan. The President of the General Assembly commended Uzbekistan for efforts on gender equality, youth, SDGs, #Vaccines4All & rehabilitation around the Aral Sea. The President also held productive talks with HE Abdulaziz Kamilov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan, and met with HE Tanzila Narbaeva, Chairperson of the Senate and commended Uzbekistan’s commitment to gender equality and women in power. The President spoke with the UN team in Uzbekistan, including the Resident Coordinator Helena Fraser. They discussed the UN’s work in the region including on COVID19 relief, digitization, youth empowerment, and support to the Aral Sea region.
- The President of the General Assembly has concluded his visit to Turkmenistan, which took place from 4th to 5th July. The President was received in Ashgabat by H.E. Mr. Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, President of Turkmenistan. The President of the General Assembly commended the President of Turkmenistan for his commitment to multilateralism and for remaining a global leader in, and advocate of, political neutrality. They discussed the need for a transformational recovery from COVID-19, the ongoing environmental crisis in the Aral Sea region, and the need to strengthen regional trade and infrastructure to boost economic growth and maintain peace and stability. The Presidents also discussed the situation in Afghanistan and underlined the importance of supporting Afghanistan and its people on their path towards peace and political reconciliation in the country. The President of the General Assembly thanked Turkmenistan for continuing to host the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia and supporting its activities through dialogue and diplomacy.
- The President also held a bilateral meeting and luncheon with Mr. Rashid Meredov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan. In addition to an exchange of views on global pandemic recovery and the need to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals, the President and Foreign Minister reflected on challenges for Middle-Income Countries and Landlocked Developing Countries in pursuing development objectives. They also talked about climate action, digitalization and connectivity as well as the recent developments in Afghanistan. The President’s final bilateral meeting was with Mrs. Gulshat Mammedova, Chairperson of the Mejlis of Turkmenistan. The President reflected on the similarities between parliaments and the UN General Assembly, noting the responsibility of each to remain operational and working on behalf of the people they served, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to bilateral discussions, the President held a discussion with the UN Country Team to learn of initiatives and efforts underway in support of Turkmenistan and the Central Asian region.
- The President will continue his visit to Central Asia with meetings in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.
QUESTIONS ON HIGH-LEVEL WEEK AND CALLS FROM ELDERS
- When asked about an update for High-level Week preparations, the Spokesperson confirmed the latest update from the Office of the President of the General Assembly was the letter dated 24 June and said that the Office continues to speak to all concerned parties and will provide updates in due course. The Spokesperson confirmed that there was not yet any requests from Global leaders of Heads of State to speak at High-level week.
- When asked about the President’s reaction to calls from the Elders to take seriously the Pandemic Preparedness report from Helen Clarke and the discussion on future of pandemic should take place in the General Assembly. The Spokesperson said she would share this report with the President and said if there was a call by Member States for this meeting, the President would accommodate a request as per the normal procedure.