President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani met this morning with a delegation from Turkmenistan led by Deputy Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, Mr. Rashid Meredov.
In the meeting that took place in ARG, the delegation from Turkmenistan presented the greetings and good wishes of the President of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, to the President of Afghanistan.
Welcoming the delegation, President Ghani said that he looks forward to receiving the President of Turkmenistan in Afghanistan in the near future.
President Ghani said that we want continued cooperation with Turkmenistan. He added that during the upcoming trip of the President of Turkmenistan to Afghanistan, we want to discuss projects on electricity supply, Afghanistan-Turkmenistan-Iran and Afghanistan-Turkmenistan-Tajikistan railways as well as further expansion of relations and cooperation between the two countries in areas of infrastructure, economy, electricity, fuel and gas.
President Ghani noted that insecurity in northern areas of the country might have slowed down large economic projects; he said that the government of Afghanistan has taken serious measures to improve security all over Afghanistan, particularly in in the northern parts of the country.
Reiterating that Turkmenistan is one of the main economic partners of Afghanistan, the President said that in Shanghai Cooperation Organization and BRICS Summits in Ufa, Russia it was agreed between Afghanistan, India and Turkmenistan that work on extension of the gas pipeline start soon and that he wants to finalize this issue during the upcoming trip of the President of Turkmenistan to Afghanistan.
President Ghani stated that upon completion of these projects, the Province of Herat will turn into a transit zone and that Afghanistan will get connected to the Caspian Sea via Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and Turkey.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan, Mr. Rashid Meredov, said that Afghanistan is the friend and neighbor of Turkmenistan and that his country supports the Afghan peace process.
Stressing the internal, regional and international aspects of the war in Afghanistan, the delegation from Turkmenistan said that they support the position of the President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan that terrorists come to Afghanistan to disrupt security of the country and region.
The delegation also said that Turkmenistan has constantly highlighted in international discussions that the issue of terrorism and narcotics is not just Afghanistan’s problem and that countries in the region and the world should cooperate with each other in order to counter this phenomenon.
The meeting was also attended by the Ministers of Mines, Public Works, Energy and Water, and the Director General of the Office of Administrative Affairs.