Today, the special conference of medical and sanitary institutions "Cooperation of the countries-members of the Non-Aligned Movement on the preparedness and resilience for emerging threats in public health" started at the "Ýyldyz" hotel of the capital.
A two-day representative forum is held at the initiative of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov, made at the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Contact Group summit on COVID-19 response held in Baku, the capital of the Azerbaijan Republic in March of this year.
Cooperation of mutual interest with foreign states and authoritative international and regional organisations is a priority of the foreign policy of our country, which actively supports development of co-ordinated approaches and balanced solutions to a wide spectrum of important issues.
In this regard, constructive partnership of Turkmenistan adjusted during the last years on the platform of Non-Aligned Movement - the organisation uniting today 120 states of the world on principles of nonparticipation in military-political blocks is rather indicative. As known, it is on these principles that the position of our fatherland is based on the international arena and it is stipulated by its permanent neutral status and firm adherence to ideals of peaceful disposition, creation and humanism.
It is necessary to remind that in 2020 within the margins of the above-named organisation, National Leader of the Turkmen people, Chairman of the Khalk Maslakhaty Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov proposed to develop the program document including main principles of solidary activity of member states to combat epidemics as well as series of measures, aimed at their prevention and eradication.
By supporting intensification of multilateral partnership of medical communities in the area of scientific diplomacy, our country has put forward a number of initiatives, including establishment of such international and regional tools, as the WHO special program for research of genome of coronavirus, multilateral mechanism of World Health Organization to combat pneumonia, WHO methodical centre for treatment and prevention of acute infections, Central Asian regional centre of epidemiology, virology and bacteriology during the last years.
At the last summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Contact Group, President Serdar Berdimuhamedov especially underlined necessity of creation of the uniform organisation, bank of information and techniques to combat infectious diseases, accessible to all members. As a groundwork for teamwork in the given area, it was proposed to hold the special conference of medical and sanitary institutions of the Non-Aligned Movement in Ashgabat with participation of practising doctors, scientists, experts, representatives of interested international structures in counteraction to new threat and overcoming of crisis connected with it.
Numerous diplomats and representatives of medical communities from almost 30 countries-participants of the Non-Aligned Movement as well as authoritative international organisations, first of all World Health Organization and other structural divisions of the United Nations were invited to participation in the present large scale forum, which became one of the important events of 2023.
The agenda of the two-day conference organised by the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan in a hybrid format, includes a wide range of important issues representing a general interest. A special significance is attached to practical steps on development of mechanisms of consolidation and intensification of effective cooperation in the field of medicine and sanitary, which is based on the experience gained during the coronavirus pandemic and post pandemic period.
Delegates of the forum heard a welcoming message of President Serdar Berdimuhamedov sent to them, in which it was underlined that the fact of organization of the conference on the eve of International Neutrality Day and the 28th anniversary of adoption of the Resolution on permanent neutrality of Turkmenistan by the General Assembly of the United Nations Organization as a sign of high respect for our country as well as recognition of efficiency of modernisation of national system of public health services and health protection with great big enthusiasm.
“Historical proposals and initiatives, which have been put forward with a view of solution of the most of acute issues, arisen before people during the pandemic, displayed unity, resoluteness and firmness of the position of countries of the Non-Aligned Movement as well as significance and value of humanistic ideals for all mankind”, - the President of Turkmenistan noted in his massage, having expressed confidence that the present forum will promote development of interaction aimed at achievement of good results.
Speaking at the plenary session, WHO/EUROPE Director, Country Support, Partnerships, and Acting Regional Emergency Director Dr Gundo Weiler expressed sincere gratitude to the President of Turkmenistan for the initiative of organization of the given event, which gave an opportunity to discuss the issues of their interest and to plan further joint actions.
As was underlined, medical diplomacy is an important element of joint efforts for achievement of security and justice in the field of public health services, promoting international cooperation and coordination, which help prevent, reveal and react to global health challenges.
In the speech, it was pointed out that the COVID-19 pandemic, which shifted health to the centre of global dialogue, visually showed that well-being of humanity directly depends on systems of public health services, which are necessary for strengthening by means of international partnership.
Having greeted the gathered on behalf of the United Nations teams in the country, UN Resident Coordinator for Turkmenistan Dmitry Shlapachenko expressed confidence that the present forum will become one more important step to strengthening of cooperation and reaction to challenges in the sphere of public health services.
In the light of proposals of Turkmenistan on intensification of interaction between member countries of the Non-Aligned Movement, World Health Organization and other interested international partners necessity of development of concrete mechanisms of multilateral cooperation, exchange of experience and information was underlined.
Having highly appreciated the position of Turkmenistan and its powerful contribution to global efforts to solve modern problems, D.Shlapachenko urged to support the proposal of the Turkmen side to hold regular meetings and conferences of medical and sanitary institutions, which will become a platform for intensification of contacts and discussion of new challenges as well as development of concrete actions plans.
At the same time, participants of the conference underlined that the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), being the second-large international organisation after the United Nations, throughout almost 60 years of its existence became an important player in global architecture of public health services and the key partner of WHO in cooperation with which, common issues in the field of health protection of people are solved effectively.
The particular interest during the international forum was evoked by reports on achievements of Turkmenistan in the field of public health services. First of all, it concerns steady improvement of the national system of health, increase of a spectrum and quality of medical services rendered to the population according to the world standards, preparation of highly-skilled personnel and others.
In speeches, it was marked that as a result of successful realisation of the Government program “Saglyk”, developed under the leadership of National Leader of the Turkmen people Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov, in the Era of Revival of the New Epoch of the Powerful State in the country an average life expectancy of population steadily increases, infrastructure of the sector, which is regularly supplemented with modern technologies and modern medical centres, which have no analogues in the region, innovative technologies, the best world experience and achievements in the medicine sphere are introduced actively.
All this visually testifies that the care of health and well-being of people is put in Turkmenistan on par with priorities of home policy, the major principle of which is “state - for people!”
A great significance is given to the further strengthening of relations with leading international organisations, including with the United Nations and its specialised structures - World Health Organization, UNICEF, UNFPA as well as large medical institutions and the research centres.
Having noted that the pandemic made a negative impact on realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, delegates of the forum-underlined importance of activization of joint actions for achievement of the planned goals of the Agenda for 2030.
Among the important steps aimed at maintenance of universal security in the sphere of public health services, development and adoption of the convention, the agreement or other international document of WHO on prevention, revealing and reaction to arising pandemics were designated.
Systematization of cooperation of NAM countries in medical research also acts as priorities. It is required to make active exchange of experience, techniques in counteraction to dangerous infectious diseases, to put this work on a regular and constant basis taking into account valuable practice and positive experience, gained by each of countries-participants of the organization.
In the general opinion, the threat of the 21st century - COVID-19 - revealed necessity of expanded global system of epidemiological supervision, investment into scientific researches and development of new technologies.
All it demands coordinated cooperation between governments, international organisations, scientific and medical communities that was promoted by the present conference, which became, according to the general opinion, an important stage in joint efforts on creation of safe and sustainable future of the planet.
Having thanked the Turkmen side for a high organizational level of the largest forum and hospitality, foreign visitors congratulated their colleagues and all Turkmen people on the forthcoming big holiday - Day of Neutrality of the country.
As was marked, today, the legal status of permanent neutrality, which was assigned to Turkmenistan a firm principle of non-interference in internal affairs of other states and nonparticipation in any military conflicts, is regarded by the international community as an important factor of maintenance of peace, stability and well-being in the entire Central Asian region.
Thanks to the peaceful foreign policy aimed at expansion of friendly and brotherly relations with all interested countries and partners, maintenance of sustainable development on the planet, the authority of our country steadily increases.
Important international initiatives of Turkmenistan, including the one declaration of the year 2023 as "International Year of Dialogue as a Guarantee of Peace" are appreciated highly.
It is known that many countries-participants of the Non-Aligned Movement not only supported the given initiative, but also became co-authors of the corresponding resolution that convincingly showed unity of goals and aspirations, fidelity to peaceful, humanistic principles of unity.
Being confident that the present forum will become one more important step on the way of consolidation of constructive international dialogue, participants expressed their sincere gratitude to President of Turkmenistan Serdar Berdimuhamedov and National Leader of the Turkmen people, Chairman of the Khalk Maslakhaty Hero-Arkadag for the many-sided activity aimed at maintenance of peace, sustainable development, expansion of international cooperation for the universal bright future.
Upon completion of the plenary session, the conference continued its work on the sidelines of separate thematic sessions: “Strengthening of partnership and cooperation on the basis of the lessons taken from the pandemic and restoration after pandemic”, “New tools and approaches for co-education and collective actions, created during the COVID-19 pandemic and other emergency situations in the field of public health services”, "One Health” approach to reduce threats to health of people, animals and ecosystems”.
The role of medical diplomacy on achievement of safety and justice in the field of public health services as well as assistance to international cooperation and coordination with a view of prevention, revealing and reaction to basic threats to health will become a topic of discussion on the margins of the second day of the conference.
For participants of the conference a large cultural program including an excursion to the "smart" city of Arkadag as well as to museums and sights of the Turkmen capital is planned.