1. On November 15, Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Kim Hyoung-zhin met bilaterally with Deputy Foreign Minister Nizomiddin Zohidi of Tajikistan, who was on a visit to the Republic of Korea for the tenth Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum. In their meeting, the two ranking diplomats discussed the ROK-Tajikistan relations; ways to step up substantive cooperation; the situation on the Korean Peninsula; and ways to work together on the international stage.
2. The two sides, pointing out that the bilateral summit talks in April 2015 had served as a momentum for advances in the bilateral relations, expressed satisfaction over the fact such exchange programs and cooperation between the two countries as the ROK-Central Asia Caravan event in Dushanbe in March 20116 have been helping promote mutual understanding and friendship between the peoples of the two countries.
3. Deputy Minister Kim, taking note of progress in development cooperation projects with Tajikistan, the ROK’s partner for official development assistance (ODA), in the areas of energy and public administration, proposed that the two countries bolster the institutional foundation for the diversification of substantive cooperation, including by concluding a memorandum of understanding for cooperation on healthcare and medical services.
° Deputy Minister Zohidi, noting with appreciation that the ROK’s development cooperation projects since the establishment of diplomatic relations have contributed greatly to the socio-economic development of Tajikistan, voiced hope for closer cooperation in the sectors – such as labor and education -- essential for the national development of Tajikistan.
4. Deputy Minister Kim extended appreciation to the Tajik government for its consistent support for the efforts to denuclearize North Korea, including promptly issuing a statement of condemnation in response to North Korea’s fifth nuclear test, and asked it to remain cooperative with regard to the nuclear and human rights issues of North Korea.
° Deputy Minister Zohidi, calling the North Korean nuclear program a security threat that triggers a grave crisis in peace and stability not only on the Korean Peninsula but also in the entire world, stated that Tajikistan will remain supportive of the ROK’s policy for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula.
5. With the year 2017 marking the 25th anniversary of the ROK-Tajikistan diplomatic relations and the 80th anniversary of the settlement of ethnic Koreans in Central Asia, the two sides agreed to hold various cultural exchange events and thereby to help the peoples of the two countries better understand each other.
6. The ROK-Tajikistan meeting is seen to have served as an opportunity to enhance friendly and cooperative ties with Tajikistan, the ROK’s major partner for diplomacy toward Central Asia for co-prosperity and mutually beneficial cooperation.
* unofficial translation