By Ruslan Rehimov
BAKU, Azerbaijan (AA) – Turkish and Azerbaijani think-tanks on Thursday agreed on further cooperation on the sidelines of the 10th anniversary meeting of the Turkic Council.
Turkey’s Center for Strategic Research (SAM) and Azerbaijan’s AIR Center signed a cooperation protocol in the Azeri capital Baku after the meeting, marking a decade of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-Speaking States (Turkic Council).
The meeting covered the council's founding, its achievements to date, measures to strengthen the council, and the importance of the 2009 Nakhchivan Agreement, which established the group.
“Ten years can be considered a successful period for the Turkic Council,” said Ufuk Ulutas, chairman of the Turkish think-tank.
“The Nakhchivan Agreement, which led to the establishment of the Turkic Council, is a very important agreement. Major steps have been taken over the last 10 years. The fact that Uzbekistan, the most populous country in Central Asia, is a member is a very important step,” he added.
“The Turkic Council has opened an office in Hungary. Maybe it's a step towards full membership,” he also said.
Also present at the event were Turkish Ambassador to Azerbaijan Erkan Ozorol, Turkic Council Secretary General Baghdad Amreyev, AIR Center Chairman Farid Shafiyev, and many academics.
The Nakhchivan Agreement on the establishment of the Turkic Council, a global intergovernmental organization meant to promote comprehensive cooperation among Turkic-speaking states, was signed by Turkey, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan on Oct. 3, 2009.
* Writing by Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak