SCO's Secretary-General Rashid Alimov met with Foreign Minister of Turkmenistan Rashid Meredov on 11 February 2017 in Ashgabat.
Turkmenistan's Foreign Minister thanked the SCO Observer Mission for taking part in monitoring the presidential election in the country, and confirmed its readiness to create the necessary conditions that would enable the mission to fulfil its mandate on election day.
The SCO Secretary-General thanked Turkmenistan for inviting the SCO Observer Mission and praised the country's efforts to prepare the election. "This is a special mission for the SCO: for the first time in Organisation's history, we will be monitoring elections outside the SCO. It shows that the SCO is viewed as an authoritative voice, but it also means that the mission bears special responsibility," Rashid Alimov pointed out, adding that the country has gone to great lengths to improve its electoral system and election law and to bring them in line with the highest international standards.
"The SCO Observer Mission got down to work and was guided in its efforts by a plan," the SCO Observer Mission Head said. He went on to thank Turkmenistan for supporting its efforts.
The participants also discussed future cooperation between the SCO and Turkmenistan, specifically, in the transport industry, paying special attention to the agreement signed by the SCO member states with a view to facilitating international shipments by road.
The meeting was held in a warm and friendly atmosphere.
The presidential election will take place in Turkmenistan on 12 February 2017. The SCO Observer Mission will hold a news conference on 13 February 2017 to make a statement on the outcomes of its monitoring of preparations for and holding of the presidential election.