U.S. Secretary of State Kerry met today with four Central Asian foreign ministers on the margins of the OSCE Ministerial Meeting. Welcoming ministers from Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, the Secretary regretted that the Foreign Minister of Turkmenistan was unable to make it to Hamburg while noting the continued strong commitment by all five countries to the C5+1 diplomatic platform. The group continued the talks begun in Samarkand last November during Secretary Kerry’s historic trip to Central Asia, and built upon this August in Washington. This was the fourth time the ministers have met to discuss regional issues of mutual interest, such as economic connectivity, regional security, environment and climate change, and humanitarian issues.
The Secretary congratulated the ministers on their countries’ 25th anniversary year of independence, and celebrated United States’ recognition of their independence and our support for the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of each of their countries.
Secretary Kerry underscored the U.S. commitment to the C5+1 diplomatic platform as a means to work with the Central Asian countries on regional and global challenges, and highlighted our support for the region. The Secretary and the four foreign ministers also discussed the progress made on the five joint projects, which were agreed upon in August at the C5+1 ministerial meeting in Washington. Secretary Kerry reiterated our commitment to the C5+1 format as we broaden and deepen our relationship with the Central Asian states.