Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb.19
Azerbaijani, Georgian and Turkish foreign ministers have signed a joint statement following the trilateral meeting in Tbilisi, said the official Twitter page of Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry.
In the joint statement, the ministers expressed satisfaction with the regular meetings in trilateral format and reiterated their shared aspiration for strengthening peace, security and stability in the region.
They emphasized their commitment to the Trabzon Declaration, the Batumi Joint Communiqué, the Ganja and Kars Statements adopted in the previous trilateral meetings of the ministers of foreign affairs.
The ministers condemned in the strongest possible terms, the heinous terrorist attacks in Ankara and Diyarbakir on 17 and 18 February 2016, respectively, which targeted civilians and military personnel alike, left more than 35 dead, scores injured, and once again exposed the true nature of terrorism. The foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Georgia reaffirmed their unwavering solidarity with Turkey, extended their deepest condolences to the Turkish nation and reiterated their strong partnership with Turkey in combating the shared threat of terrorism.
They reiterated the utmost importance of the earliest peaceful settlement of the conflict in and around Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the conflict in the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia on the basis of principles and norms of international law, particularly, sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of the internationally recognized borders of states, as well as in accordance with relevant resolutions and decisions of the UN, the OSCE and the CoE.
The sides highlighted the successful cooperation in the field of energy. In this regard, welcomed the first meeting of the Southern Gas Corridor Advisory Council held in Baku on 12 February 2015, the ground-breaking ceremony of the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) held on 17 March 2015 in Kars and expressed their full support for the development of the Southern Gas Corridor, as well as for other projects aimed at transporting hydrocarbons from the Caspian basin to the western markets through Azerbaijan, Georgia and Turkey. They underlined the decisive role of these projects in enhancing the energy security of all the countries involved.
The ministers emphasized the key role of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway in facilitating competitive transportation between Asia and Europe, noted with content successful testing of the Georgian section of the railway in 2015 and reiterated utmost importance of the earliest start of operation of the BTK railway. In this regard, they welcomed the fruitful consultations at the trilateral Ministerial meeting of the BTK railway Coordination Council held in Tbilisi on 12 February 2016.
They underlined the importance of the East-West/Middle transport corridor linking Europe with Asia through Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and the Central Asian countries via the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea (realization of joint projects regarding rail and road transportation and development of sea ports such as Baku International Sea Trade Port and New Deep Sea Port in Anaklia as well as those along the Turkish Black Sea coast).
The foreign ministers decided to hold their next meeting in Azerbaijan, in 2016.