UN: Turkmenistan's neutrality became valuable contribution to security in Central Asia

Turkmenistan's declaration as being a 'permanent neutrality', recognised and supported by the UN General Assembly, became a valuable contribution to peace and security in Central Asia, the message of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said.

'In this context, your continued support of the UN Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia, which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary, also demonstrates the commitment of your country towards the maintenance of regional stability', the message said.

Turkmenistan's decision to adopt the status of permanent neutrality was officially recognised by the UN in 1995. The headquarters of the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia is located in Ashgabat.

According to military doctrine, approved since the mid-nineties, Turkmenistan pursues a policy of positive neutrality and defence sufficiency, the key note of which is refusal from participating in any military and political blocs.

Afghanistan, having a long border with Turkmenistan, has remained a tension area in the region for a long time.

Ashgabat expressed its readiness to provide its political space for holding an Afghan peace dialogue under auspices of UN.

A large scale project for the construction of a gas pipeline to India and Pakistan to carry the supply of Turkmen gas is also associated with Afghanistan's territory. Observers believe that its implementation could contribute to the reconstruction of Afghanistan, as it will create jobs and provide the country with a guaranteed income for transit.