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News, 8/24/2017

25 years of diplomatic relations with Eastern European and Central Asian states

A reception was organised at the Government Banquet Hall in Helsinki to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Finland’s diplomatic relations with Eastern European and Central Asian states.

Foreign Minister Timo Soini with Eastern European and Central Asian states’ ambassadors . Photo: Marko Huttunen
Foreign Minister Timo Soini with Eastern European and Central Asian states’ ambassadors . Photo: Marko Huttunen

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Finland decided that it will recognise the independence of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Belarus as soon as possible and to establish diplomatic relations with them. Diplomatic relations with these countries were established in 1992.

In his speech at the event, Foreign Minister Timo Soini underlined that security is much more than military security:

“Sustainable security begins with education, economic opportunities and equality. It is my firm believe that genuine security cannot exist without rule of law, strong institutions, transparency, and respect for human rights. These issues are also key priorities in the EU's Eastern Partnership and Central Asian policies.”

Former Ambassador Laura Reinilä, who participated in the preparation of the diplomatic relations in 1992. Photo: Marko Huttunen
Former Ambassador Laura Reinilä, who participated in the preparation of the diplomatic relations in 1992. Photo: Marko Huttunen

Finland supports the reform processes under way in Eastern Europe and Central Asia both bilaterally and through the EU and international organizations. Bilaterally Finland is interested in closer cooperation in several sectors, including trade, education, environmental protection and energy efficiency.

The Eastern European and Central Asian states’ ambassadors to Finland were given a Finland 100 vase as a gift.

“Based on our history, we know that building a path to an independent, democratic and prosperous country requires hard work,” Soini said.

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Updated 8/24/2017

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