The international conference “Turkmenistan and international organizations: cooperation for peace and development” continued its work in the building of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkmenistan.
Participants include representatives of international organizations that have been cooperating with the country for a long time: UNDP, UNICEF, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, UN Conference on Trade and Development, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, United Nations Industrial Development Organization , United Nations Population Fund, International Organization for Migration, World Health Organization, and heads of diplomatic missions.
At the meeting, the projects of bilateral and multilateral cooperation for the year of 2020 year were expanded. Particular attention was paid to expanding projects in the field of human rights, as well as strengthening partnership in this area between the country and relevant UN bodies and funds.
“As the most important areas in the implementation of the SDGs, we note the following areas: education, healthcare, social protection, ecology, sustainable energy, sustainable transport, and a number of other areas of joint efforts aimed at their practical implementation in Turkmenistan,” said Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov, opening the in-session meeting of the conference.
The Minister emphasized that the whole policy of Turkmenistan is subject to one principle: “The state is for the person.” And the topic of protecting and ensuring the rights, freedoms and legitimate interests of people and citizens became one of the central issues at the plenary session of the conference with the participation of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov.
As was confirmed at the first session, in 2020 the Turkmen side intends to significantly intensify its partnership with international organizations in the humanitarian sphere.
– We have a good, positive experience in cooperation, but there are also great potential opportunities. In 2020, the joint activity of the Institute of State and Law, the Commissioner for Human Rights, public structures of Turkmenistan and international partners will be devoted to their practical implementation,” Meredov said.
The five-year National Human Rights Plan is coming to an end this year. Taking part in the conference, the regional representative of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Central Asia, Mr. Richard Komenda, confirmed the agency’s commitment to provide assistance and expertise for the implementation of the next stage of this plan – until 2024.
He also noted that OHCHR will continue to cooperate with the Ombudsman Institute in Turkmenistan and strengthen its capacity, and will also assist in applying for accreditation to the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (HANRI).
– For this, we have already created a regional platform for national institutions, so that the ombudsmen meet, share experience and information in the field of human rights protection.
OHCHR also plans to create a regional consortium to raise awareness and level of education in the field of human rights, establish a master’s program in this area and train experts for the government and public organizations. The department also continues to work together with the Institute of State and Law to create a national database that will combine recommendations on the implementation of human rights with the Sustainable Development Goals.
On the sidelines of the forum, the Turkmen side put forward a proposal to international organizations – the relevant UN, OSCE, Red Cross and Red Crescent structures, etc. – to join the next meeting of the Interdepartmental Commission on Human Rights in Ashgabat and make their proposals for further improving the work of relevant departments and project ideas for the next National Plan.
The Minister also expressed gratitude for close cooperation in this important area to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, his representative office in Central Asia, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the European Union.