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Washington, DC (STL.News) – The US Department of State released the following statement: The text of the following statement was released by the Governments of the United States of America, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan on the occasion of the Fourth C5+1 Ministerial.
The Secretary of State of the United States of America, the five Ministry representatives of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Tajikistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan, and the Ambassador of Turkmenistan to the United States, together issue this Joint Declaration of Partnership and Cooperation following the fourth Ministerial and sixth ministerial-level meeting in the C5+1 format, held September 22, 2019, in New York. The participants note the new atmosphere of partnership, reaffirm the value of the format, and agree to strengthen cooperation, regional stability, and sustainable development through regular dialogue and joint action.
Reaffirming our abiding respect for the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of each country, as well as for a strong, independent, prosperous, and stable Central Asian region, the Ministerial participants agree to pursue the following priority areas for cooperation:
Strengthen the C5+1 diplomatic platform as a mechanism for dialogue and joint action through future ministerial meetings and regular diplomatic and expert-level dialogues, identifying new opportunities to expand cooperation in the cultural, humanitarian, and educational spheres, as well as security;
Develop regional trade and economic ties, and also consider the C5+1 and the U.S.-Central Asia Trade and Investment Framework Agreement as platforms to strengthen ties between the countries of the region and the United States, as well as to enhance the export potential of Central Asia;
Deepen cooperation in countering terrorism and violent extremism, organized and financial crime, and drug and human trafficking, including through expanded information sharing, cooperation on border security, and the sharing of best practices regarding issues that arise with the repatriation, rehabilitation, or prosecution of foreign terrorist fighters among the countries of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan;
Support a peaceful settlement of the Afghanistan conflict by ensuring the stable and sustainable development of Central Asia, with special emphasis on expanding economic relations of the region, as well as on the implementation of regional energy, railway, transport, communication, and infrastructure projects through the assistance of international financial institutions;
Strengthen civil society through respect for recognized norms and principles of international law, including the United Nations Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Declaration on Principles of International Law, and the Helsinki Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe.