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 You are in: Under Secretary for Political Affairs > Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs > Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs Releases > Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs Fact Sheets > 2002
Fact Sheet
Bureau of Public Affairs
Washington, DC
April 17, 2002

U.S. Embassy in Turkmenistan: Tenth Anniversary

The U.S. Embassy in Ashgabat recently marked its tenth anniversary of operations in Turkmenistan -- March 17, 2002.

"We are extremely pleased to celebrate ten years of working with the people and Government of Turkmenistan," Ambassador Laura Kennedy stated. "I am proud that the U.S. Government was one of the first to recognize the independence of Turkmenistan. I hope that the next ten years will bring closer cooperation on a range of issues, from education and civil society to narcotics control and regional security issues."

From the beginning of its operations, the American Mission has focused on expanding and strengthening Turkmen-American cooperation and especially investing in the future of Turkmenistan. Over 600 citizens of Turkmenistan, the majority of whom are young people, have traveled to the United States on official exchange programs to study or meet with their professional counterparts.

Ambassador Kennedy and Minister of Culture Aydogdiyev standing at table examining blue and white mosaic pieces

Recent cultural ties include joint projects such as the restoration of the mosaic tile of the 15th-century Seit Jemmalatdin Mosque in Annau. As part of the Ambassador's Fund for Cultural Preservation program, local archeologists and historians will reconstruct the unique mosaic tile of the mosque, build tourist walkways, and strengthen the foundation of the ruins. Ambassador Kennedy and Turkmenistan's Minister of Culture Orazgeldy Aydogdiyev officially opened the project on October 11, 2001 by joining two pieces of the ancient mosaic, which both said was symbolic of the two countries' cooperation and friendship.

The American Mission has also worked with the Turkmen Government to promote political and economic reforms, including projects to strengthen the rule of law, build a stronger civil society, and improve the health and education sectors.

Since September 11, 2001, the U.S. Government and the Government of Turkmenistan have worked closely together in the war on terrorism. The two governments have worked with the UN agencies to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan. Since October, over 165,000 metric tons of food and other goods have been shipped by the World Food Program into Afghanistan from Turkmenabat, 80% of which is funded by the U.S. Government. Approximately 40% of food aid entering Afghanistan transits Turkmenistan. The U.S. is also committed to working with Turkmenistan on the long-term reconstruction of Afghanistan and its integration into stable and beneficial regional and international arrangements.



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