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Caspian Sea should remain sea of peace, amity: President

ASHKHABAD. August 15. KAZINFORM. The Caspian Sea should remain the sea of peace and friendship joining borders of Iran and Turkmenistan together, visiting President of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Tuesday evening. According to IRNA, President Ahmadinejad made the remarks during official meeting of Iranian and Turkmen delegations chaired by the Iranian president and his Turkmen counterpart Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov. President Ahmadinejad arrived in Ashkhabad from Kabul, Afghanistan, on the second leg of his three-nation tour of regional states. On the last leg of his tour, he will proceed to Kyrgyzstan on Thursday to attend the Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Referring to Iran-Turkmenistan ties as "cordial," the visiting president said the two capitals enjoyed common view on regional developments including the status of the Caspian Sea. Iran, Russia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan are the Caspian Sea littoral states. The Iranian president also invited President Berdymukhamedov to attend an upcoming summit of the Caspian Sea littoral states to be held in Tehran in the future. Noting that Tehran-Ashkhabad enjoyed "satisfactory" cooperation in political and security fields, President Ahmadinejad stressed that their bilateral cooperation would serve independence of both countries. He also said that the two states had "good cooperation in the fields of energy, transportation and electricity." According to the Iranian president issues like drugs smuggling were common "dangerous threats" posed against Iran and Turkmenistan. Meanwhile, the Turkmen president referred to Tehran-Ashkhabad relations as "useful and cordial," and ties which are based on mutual respect. "Iran was among first countries that recognized Turkmenistan's independence and supported our policy of neutrality," said the president of Turkmenistan. He added that Tehran and Ashkhabad enjoyed common views on major international and regional developments and their views over the status of the Caspian Sea are "very close together". President Berdymukhamedov expressed hope that the two capitals would experience brighter prospects through implementation of previously concluded agreements. The visiting president of Iran attended a dinner banquet Wednesday night given at his honor by his Turkmen counterpart.


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