SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov met with Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Turkmenistan to China Chinar Rustamova at the SCO headquarters on 23 January 2017.
The meeting was held at the initiative of the Turkmen side to discuss the upcoming presidential election in Turkmenistan and the SCO Observer Mission's role.
In particular, Ambassador Rustamova updated the SCO Secretary-General on preparations for the election, the legal and institutional guarantees of the free expression of people's will and the procedure for monitoring the election by international observers and the local and international media.
SCO Secretary-General Rashid Alimov told the Ambassador of Turkmenistan about the SCO Secretariat's routine work to create the SCO Observer Mission for the election and its contribution to the work of international observers.
He said that the SCO Observer Mission would work in keeping with the principles of political neutrality and non-interference in the internal affairs of the country in question and in strict compliance with the SCO Regulations on the SCO Observer Mission at Presidential and/or Parliamentary Elections and Referendums.
The Mission's conclusions will be based on personal observations by members of the Mission and factual material collected during preparations for the election and on the election day.
"We see the participation of the SCO Observer Mission, as well as other international observers, in monitoring the election as the striving of Turkmen society for openness and as yet another big step towards strengthening democracy in the country," the SCO Secretary-General said.
Rashid Alimov expressed confidence that the upcoming presidential election in Turkmenistan will be well organised and that election results will strengthen the social consolidation and socioeconomic development of Turkmenistan and will deepen and enhance the country's mutually beneficial cooperation with its key international partners, including the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation.