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INTERNATIONAL > Turkey to boost Azeri, Georgian cooperation

TRABZON

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FM Davutoğlu (L) talks with his Azeri (C) and Georgian counterparts in Trabzon. DHA photo

FM Davutoğlu (L) talks with his Azeri (C) and Georgian counterparts in Trabzon. DHA photo

Sevil Erkuş Sevil Erkuş sevil.kucukkosum@hdn.com.tr

The foreign ministers of Turkey, Georgia and Azerbaijan launched a trilateral cooperation mechanism signing “Trabzon declaration.” the decleration came after their first trilateral meeting yesterday to boost regional economic cooperation.

“We are working on a three-year action plan to improve the cooperation areas between three countries,” said Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu speaking at a tripartite press conference after meeting.

The most important lines of Eurasia have met with this mechanism; he said adding that the three countries will cooperate in areas of transportation, energy as well as tourism and culture.

Davutoğlu also said that this mechanism will make contribution to the stability and prosperity in the region. This is not an exclusionist mechanism and we hope it help to restore lasting peace, said Davutoğlu. Hiz Azeri counterpart said that Azerbaijan has good relations with Turkey as well as with Israel because the 20 percent of their lands are under occupation, referring to Armenia.

Davutoğlu said the three countries were determined to develop trilateral cooperation, speaking to reporters prior to the tripartite meeting in the northeastern province of Trabzon.

“With Friday’s meeting, we are adding a third dimension to our bilateral relations. The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan and Baku-Tbilisi-Kars natural gas and railway lined carry crucial value for the future of the Caucasus and Eurasia ... The process we began today will establish a bridge between the Black Sea, the Caspian Sea and the Mediterranean,” Davutoğlu said, ahead of meeting with Georgian Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze and Azerbaijai Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov.

The tripartite mechanism will make important contributions to regional peace, stability and prosperity, Davutoğlu added.

The ministers discussed the political framework of today’s trilateral meeting of economy ministers of Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey in Iğdır, where they will seek ways of better economic integration, a Turkish official told the Hürriyet Daily News. “We aim to boost trade and tourism through easier transportation,” the official said.

The mechanism also aims to contribute to regional stability and security by creating an atmosphere of sustainable regional cooperation in the South Caucasus. The three ministers will continue to meet every six months, first in Batumi, then in Azerbaijan.

June/09/2012

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