SAMARKAND, Uzbekistan 

Turkey on Sunday opened a consulate general in the historical Samarkand city of Uzbekistan.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu inaugurated the Turkish Consulate General in Samarkand.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Cavusoglu said the consulate will be the new symbol of permanent fraternity with Turkey’s fatherland Uzbekistan.

The opening of the consulate general was announced together by Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Uzbek counterpart Shavkat Mirziyoyev last year, he added.

“Turkey was the first country to recognize Uzbekistan’s independence and it also became the first country to open an embassy,” Cavusoglu noted.

He also said that although Turkey was the first to announce the decision of opening a consulate in Samarkand, adding that Kazakhstan opened its consulate in the city a short while ago.

“Of course, each mission is important in Uzbekistan, but the opening of this mission in the ancient city of our civilization, Samarkand, is of great significance,” he added.

Noting that Samarkand was the center of the historical Silk Road and the meeting pointing of the tribes, Cavusoglu underlined that the city started to become one of the attraction centers under the leadership of President Mirziyoyev.

He also stressed that Turkey closely monitors the work of Governor Erkincan Turdimov to make Samarkand a brand city, adding that Uzbekistan is also the homeland of scientists and Islamic scholars.

Cavusoglu said he will meet with his Uzbek counterpart Kamilov on Monday in the capital Tashkent to exchange views on furthering the relations and prepare for the Second High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council Meeting.

Earlier in the day, Cavusoglu visited historical sites such as the Kalyan (Great) Minaret, and the Mir-i Arab Madrasa in the historical Bukhara city.

Cavusoglu also visited the mausoleum of the country’s first President Islam Karimov and the mausoleum of the founder of the Timurid Empire Amir Timur in the Samarkand city.

Cavusoglu will also be received by President Mirziyoyev.

‘Meaningful to open consulate in Samarkand’

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Uzbekistan’s Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov said: “It is very meaningful to open the Consulate General of Samarkand in 2021. I consider that this is Turkey’s gift to Uzbekistan that celebrates 30th anniversary.”

“Turkey, the first country to recognize the independence of Uzbekistan on April 28, 1992, had [also] become the first country to open an embassy. Now, Turkey is opening its consulate in Samarkand as [once again] being one of the first countries,” he added.

He also said the consulate will have a positive impact on the development of bilateral cooperation in the fields of culture and tourism, adding that the introduction of flights between Istanbul and Samarkand increased the number of people coming from Turkey to the city.

In the ceremony, Uzbekistan’s Deputy Prime Minister for Tourism Aziz Abdulhakimov, Turkey’s Ambassador to Uzbekistan Olgan Bekar, and Consul General Salih Caner were also present.

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