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Secretary Antony J. Blinken And Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev Before Their Meeting

PRESIDENT TOKAYEV:  (Inaudible) Mr. Secretary, I very much would like to welcome you to Astana. I believe that your visit is strictly (inaudible) given additional (inaudible) to our strategic cooperation.  We have built a very good and reliable long-term partnerships in so many strategically important areas like security, energy, trade, and investment.  So we are ready to follow up on this cooperation, and once again, I welcome your visit to Astana.  And taking this opportunity, I would like to express our appreciation to the continuous and firm support of the United States for our independence, territorial integrity, and sovereignty.  Please, go ahead.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Well, Mr. President, thank you so much for receiving us today.  It’s wonderful to be here in Astana.  I was very much looking forward to this visit.  It’s important, of course, on a bilateral level, to build on the remarkable work that’s been done now over 30 years to deepen and strengthen our partnership.  And I think just in the last couple of years we’ve made further important strides in that direction.  The relationship is strong; it will only get stronger.  We’re committed to that.

At the same time, we’re grateful to you, we’re grateful to your team for bringing together Central Asian partners here in Astana today.  And so I look forward to working with our fellow foreign ministers to really engage in even – and ever-more practical work in bringing the region together, creating greater connections, connectivity, and focusing on practical things that we can do to strengthen that work.  And I think it will be to the benefit of people living throughout Central Asia, but also to the United States.  But we’re committed to that engagement at the highest levels, and I’m just so pleased to be here to advance even further the cooperation that we have.

So thank you for having us today.    

PRESIDENT TOKAYEV:  Very good.  And also, taking this opportunity I would like to send my best regards to President Biden.  This year I received three messages, personal messages from him.  I appreciate it and I think that’s (inaudible). I would have to agree with your remarks with regard to our proposed working together (inaudible) work, joint work (inaudible). 

Official news published at https://www.state.gov/secretary-antony-j-blinken-and-kazakhstan-president-kassym-jomart-tokayev-before-their-meeting/

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