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Strengthening the image of Kyrgyzstan in the international arena

A number of important international events were held in the Kyrgyz Republic in 2018, which strengthened the image and position of the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and foreign institutions of the Kyrgyz Republic organized in the country and abroad a number of memorable events (Aitmatov readings, conferences, photo exhibitions, film screenings based on the writer’s works, etc.) to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the birth of great writer Chingiz Aitmatov.

On September 24, President Sooronbai Jeenbekov took part in the opening ceremony of the photo exhibition of Aitmatov at the Hammarshild United Nations Library in New York. From October 4 to 7, the III International Issyk-Kul Intellectual Forum “Chingiz Aitmatov and the Challenges of Modernity” was held with the participation of the President and more than 100 public and cultural figures from 21 countries and 7 international organizations. On December 7, with the participation of Jeenbekov, the grand opening of the monument of Chingiz Aitmatov took place in Moscow, and the street in the city of Yekaterinburg was named after him. On August 16, the opening of the street named after Aitmatov took place in Astana with the participation of prime ministers of Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan. The park named after Aitmatov was opened in Minsk. On December 12, a bas-relief was installed on the same name street in Tashkent.

From September 2 to 8, the Third World Nomad Games were successfully held in Cholpon-Ata. Its opening ceremony was organized at a high level; for the first time with the participation of the Presidents of Kazakhstan, Turkey, Tatarstan, Prime Minister of Hungary and other high-ranking foreign guests. The games included three areas: ethnosport, ethnoculture and science. Sports teams and cultural delegations from 74 countries (about 1900 participants), over 40 high-level delegations, more than 620 media representatives from 56 countries took part in it. Thanks to the World Games, nomads of the Kyrgyz Republic have become more recognizable in the international arena; the games served as a multiplicative effect for increasing the number of foreign tourists in the country.

On October 3-6, a meeting of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly was held in Kyrgyzstan for the first time, which is important for the development of parliamentary democracy in the country. The meeting was the largest international parliamentary event in Central Asia.

On October 23-26, the Kyrgyz Republic organized the IV World Mountain Forum, the main goal of which was to identify possible paths of development towards a prosperous future of mountain regions. The Forum is relevant in light of climate change, which has an increasing impact on glaciers, water resources and contributing to the growth of natural disasters in the mountainous regions of the country.

On November 15-16, Bishkek hosted the II International Conference “Islam in the Modern Secular State,” in which representatives of 20 countries, international experts and theologians took part.

At the 62nd plenary meeting of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly in New York on December 20, the draft resolution initiated by the Kyrgyz Republic “The role of the international community in preventing radiation threat in Central Asia” was unanimously adopted.

Development of multifaceted cooperation with Central Asian countries

The development of regional cooperation is characterized by positive dynamics. High level meetings of the countries of Central Asia have become traditional, during which they discuss the current state and prospects within the regional interaction.

On February 1-2, an official visit of President Jeenbekov to Tajikistan took place, according to the results of which 9 bilateral documents were signed.

A state visit of Jeenbekov to Turkmenistan was held on August 23-24, where a package of agreements was signed that form the basis of modern Kyrgyz-Turkmen relations, including the Kyrgyz-Turkmen Declaration on Strategic Partnership, Strengthening Friendship and Trust.

An important impetus for regional cooperation was the meeting of the Heads of State of Central Asia, held on March 15 in Astana, during which the priority issues of the regional agenda were discussed. As part of the implementation of the agreements of the heads of state, at the initiative of the Kyrgyz side, on July 20-22, a full-format meeting of foreign ministers of Central Asia was held in Cholpon-Ata, for the first time, during which practical issues of further strengthening relations in all areas of regional cooperation were discussed.

On March 29, the 1st and 2nd meetings of the heads of the border regions of the Kyrgyz Republic and Uzbekistan, headed by prime ministers of the two countries, were held in Osh on December 18. These meetings reinforced the mutual readiness to promote mutually beneficial cooperation between the border regions of the two countries, which is of crucial importance for the further development of Kyrgyz-Uzbek relations.

Strategic partnership with the Russian Federation

Allied relations and strategic partnership between the Kyrgyz Republic and the Russian Federation had a positive dynamic of development and met the national interests of the country. A significant event in 2018 was Jeenbekov’s visit to Sochi for the meeting Supreme Council of the Eurasian Economic Union and a bilateral meeting with President of Russia Vladimir Putin on May 14. Also, the talks between the two heads of state were held on June 15 and September 28, during which they discussed topical issues of Kyrgyz-Russian cooperation in the trade, economic, investment and energy sectors and a number of other issues.

As part of the development of inter-parliamentary cooperation, on November 27, Speaker of the Jogorku Kenesh Dastanbek Dzhumabekov paid an official visit to the Russian Federation.

Intensive dialogue was carried out also through the foreign affairs agencies of the parties. The first working visit of the newly appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kyrgyz Republic Chingiz Aidarbekov was to the Russian Federation on October 26. Also, the Kyrgyz-Russian negotiations at the level of heads of foreign ministries were held on December 6 in Milan within the framework of the Ministerial Meeting of the OSCE member states.

Particular importance is given to the protection of the rights and interests of citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic abroad, assistance in resolving existing pressing issues in the migration sphere. In accordance with the agreements reached between Presidents of Kyrgyzstan Jeenbekov and Russia Putin, the Russian side applied a migration amnesty to citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic who violated the migration legislation of the Russian Federation.

Bringing Kyrgyz-Chinese relations to comprehensive level

2018 is characterized by a high level of political dialogue between Kyrgyzstan and the People’s Republic of China. The main outcome of the state visit of Kyrgyz President Sooronbai Jeenbekov to China on June 6-7 was bringing the bilateral relations to the level of a comprehensive strategic partnership. During the visit, the two heads of state signed the Joint Declaration of the Kyrgyz Republic and the People’s Republic of China on establishing a comprehensive strategic partnership, as well as bilateral agreements in the field of energy, agriculture, transport, and export of domestic agricultural products to China, health, emergency situations and others.

Promotion of political dialogue with the European Union

On April 11-12, President Sooronbai Jeenbekov visited the institutions of the European Union and established personal contacts at the highest level. The leaders of the EU institutions praised the ongoing reforms in the country aimed at strengthening the rule of law, fighting corruption and protecting human rights.

On November 23, a meeting of EU-Central Asian foreign ministers took place in Brussels. On December 10, Kyrgyz delegation led by Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kyrgyz Republic Chingiz Aidarbekov took part in the 16th meeting of the Kyrgyz-EU Cooperation Council.

Negotiations are underway with the EU in an active way to conclude a new Agreement on in-depth partnership and cooperation, aimed at the further development of the whole range of relations.

New impetus in the development of Kyrgyz-Turkish cooperation

Important events of the Kyrgyz-Turkish relations were the official visit of President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sooronbai Jeenbekov to the Republic of Turkey on April 9-10 and the working visit of the head of state on July 9 to participate in the inauguration of the President of the Republic of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

On September 1-2, Turkish President Erdogan paid an official visit to the Kyrgyz Republic, within which a package of documents was signed (6 agreements) and a Kyrgyz-Turkish business forum was held. Also on September 1-2, the 4th meeting of the High Council on Strategic Cooperation between Kyrgyzstan and Turkey was held in Bishkek.

Dynamic development of relations with Arab countries

The strengthening of cooperation of the Kyrgyz Republic with Arab countries is of particular importance in order to bring relations to a new qualitative level, to promote trade and economic ties and investment projects.

On April 24-26, the first meeting of the Kyrgyz-Kuwaiti Intergovernmental Commission on Economic and Technical Cooperation was held in El Kuwait. On July 27-29, the first in the history of Kyrgyz-Palestinian relations the official visit of Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Palestine Riyad Al-Maliki to the Kyrgyz Republic took place. On December 17-19, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kyrgyz Republic Chingiz Aidarbekov paid an official visit to the United Arab Emirates.

In 2018, there is a positive dynamic in the development of inter-MFA cooperation. The first consultations between the foreign ministries of the Kyrgyz Republic and Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Palestine were held, following which the parties identified new priority areas of interaction.

Participation of President in the General Debate of the 73rd session of the UNGA

On September 24-25, President Sooronbai Jeenbekov participated in the General Debate of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly in New York for the first time after taking office as head of state. The Kyrgyz President spoke at the General Debate of the General Assembly. During the meeting with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, further cooperation between the Kyrgyz Republic and the UN was discussed in terms of developing democratic institutions, improving the electoral system, environmental problems, as well as the problems of uranium tailings.

In general, for Kyrgyzstan this visit was an important political event at the international level, during which the world community was informed about important changes that have taken place in the public, political and economic life of the country, foreign policy priorities and positions of the Kyrgyz Republic on key issues on the international agenda.

Chairmanship of the SCO, the Cooperation Council of Turkic-speaking States and CSTO

On June 10, in the city of Qingdao, President of the Kyrgyz Republic Sooronbai Jeenbekov took part in SCO Summit. An important outcome of the Summit was the transfer of the chairmanship of the SCO from the People’s Republic of China to the Kyrgyz Republic for the period from June 2018 to June 2019. During the presidency, our country pays special attention to the most important issues of political, economic, transport, agricultural and humanitarian cooperation in the framework of the SCO.

On September 3, the 6th Cooperation Council of Turkic-speaking States Summit was held in Cholpon-Ata under the chairmanship of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic. Along with all the heads of the CCTS member states, the Summit, for the first time, was attended by President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Prime Minister of Hungary Orban as honored guests. Following the Summit, 4 documents were signed and 2 joint statements by the heads of state “for the 90th anniversary of Chingiz Aitmatov” and “for the development of cooperation in the field of national sports and youth”, initiated by the Kyrgyz side were adopted. At the Summit, the chairmanship moved to the Kyrgyz Republic and the attention was focused on the development of economic, investment and customs cooperation, cooperation in the field of transport, energy and tourism, as well as the protection and preservation of the common rich historical heritage, culture and sports of the Turkic peoples.

On November 8, in Astana, President Sooronbai Jeenbekov took part in the regular session of the CSTO Collective Security Council, at which Kyrgyzstan took over the chairmanship of Kazakhstan for the next inter-session period. The efforts of the Kyrgyz Republic during the chairmanship are aimed at improving and enhancing the potential of the CSTO, expanding cooperation in the field of foreign policy interaction and developing military-economic (technical) cooperation.

Improving the system of providing consular services

In order to reduce the time for consideration of applications (registration of passports, documents of the registry office, assignment of a personal identification number) of citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic abroad and improve the quality of consular services, all overseas agencies of the Kyrgyz Republic are connected to the Automated Information Systems (AIS) “Passport” and “Registry Office.” Work continues on the implementation of the AIS “Consular Accounting” and “Citizenship.”

A subcomponent of the Unified System for Accounting for External Migration “Electronic Visa” has been developed – a system that allows citizens of foreign countries to obtain visas of the Kyrgyz Republic via the Internet, without the need to contact foreign agencies of the Kyrgyz Republic. An E-visa website has been launched to apply for visas for foreign citizens (evisa.e-gov.kg). Consular fees for this service are also paid by credit / debit bank card. The launch of the “Electronic Visa” system has greatly simplified the visit of foreign tourists and businessmen to the Kyrgyz Republic. During the operation of the electronic system, about 30 thousand visas of various categories have been issued.

© 2019 Embassy of Kyrgyz Republic in New Delhi, India