AKIPRESS.COM - President Joseph Biden, Jr. met with the Presidents of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan on September 19 for the inaugural C5+1 presidential summit on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly.
The leaders discussed a range of issues, including security, trade and investment, regional connectivity, the need to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all nations, and ongoing reforms to improve governance and the rule of law.
Remarks by President Biden after Central Asia 5+1 meeting:
"It's an honor to be here with — with you, our first presidential summit — all the presidents around this table and the Secretary of State.
I think this is a historic moment. We're building on years of close cooperation between Central Asia and the United States — a cooperation that is grounded in our shared commitment to sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity. These principles matter more than ever, in my view. And today, we’re taking our cooperation to new heights.
First, we're strengthening our counterterrorism cooperation, including increased U.S. security funding to — to Central Asia.
Second, we're strengthening regional economic connectivity. For example, we're establishing a new business platform to complement our diplomatic engagement and better connect our private sectors for development purposes.
And we are — we are also discussing the potential for a new critical minerals dialogue to strengthen our energy security and supply chains for years to come.
And third, we're launching a new initiative on disability rights.
And I want to thank you all for your fruitful conversation today, which has already taken place. And I look forward to working with all of you to do even more in the future. I am genuinely looking forward to following up on our — on this meeting, because we are stronger and I genuinely believe the world is safer when we stand together — our five nations.
So, thank you very, very much for making the effort. And I look forward to seeing you soon, possibly in one of your countries. Thank you."