On October 6, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will make an official visit to the Republic of Kazakhstan at the invitation of Kazakhstani Foreign Minister Kairat Abdrakhmanov. The visit will be held ahead of a landmark date: on October 22, Russia and Kazakhstan will mark 25 years of their diplomatic relations.
Over this period of time, Russian-Kazakhstani strategic partnership has become an important factor of integration-based development in Eurasia. This partnership is playing a major role in the maintenance of stability in Central Asia. Russia and Kazakhstan have created a solid legal framework for their relations. The core element of this legal framework, which comprises over 350 interstate and intergovernmental documents, is the Agreement on Good-Neighbourliness and Alliance in the 21st Century. It provides, in part, for conducting a coordinated foreign policy.
The talks planned for this visit will focus on the implementation of key agreements reached by the presidents of Russia and Kazakhstan, primarily on the topics that will be discussed at the 14th Russia-Kazakhstan Interregional Cooperation Forum, which will be held in Chelyabinsk this autumn and will be attended by the presidents of Russia and Kazakhstan, plus the implementation of the tasks facing our countries on the international stage. These efforts have recently acquired a new dimension in light of Kazakhstan’s election as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2017−2018.
The ministers will also discuss joint activities within the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU). A new element of cooperation is the digitalisation of the EAEU member states’ economies, which can enhance the international competitiveness of Russia and Kazakhstan.
The sides will continue to coordinate their positions as well as support each other at various international venues, including the CSTO, the CIS, the SCO, the UN and the OSCE. In this context, the minsters will exchange opinions on the key subjects on the agenda of these organisations.
They will also analyse the standards of regional security in light of the geographic proximity of Russia and Kazakhstan to the main conflict areas in the Middle East and Afghanistan. During the discussions the ministers will also consider their cooperation in the context of changes in Syria and Iraq, where a debilitating blow has been delivered to the terrorists, forcing them to seek refuge closer to our region. Russia and Kazakhstan agree that the fight against international terrorism can only be effective if the international community joins forces on the basis of international law and common standards. Russia highly assesses progress reached within the framework of the Astana process, which has been launched to promote a settlement in Syria. Syria and many other countries are grateful to the Kazakhstani authorities for creating this effective negotiations venue.
During the talks the ministers will raise the subject of the need for an early formalisation of the international legal status of the Caspian Sea as a unique water body through the signing of a convention to this effect. The sides hope to build up their efforts towards advancing to the final stage of this work in the nearest future.
The upcoming talks due to be held in Astana will coincide with the 4th International Forum of MGIMO Alumni, which is developing into a unique venue, in terms of composition and the number of participants, for informal association as well as for discussions of current global topics plus international events. The MGIMO alumni forum is a positive example of the practice of public diplomacy.
The upcoming visit by the Foreign Minister of Russia to the Republic of Kazakhstan will confirm the two countries’ resolve to deepen their strategic partnership and alliance on the international stage as well as in regional affairs.