FOREIGN MINISTER TILEUBERDI: Secretary Blinken, it’s my pleasure to welcome you and your delegation here in our capital, Astana. It has been a while since our last meeting in September in New York. Positive outcomes of the recent meetings of intensive strategic partnership dialogue, the high-level human rights (inaudible) report, and (inaudible) working group demonstrate our cooperation throughout the region. Based on the exchanges (inaudible), we stand ready to work closely on vital issues of global agenda, including energy, security, and food crisis, climate change, and economic connectivity to further deepen our (inaudible) strategic partnership. So (inaudible) in high-level political engagements in Kazakhstan and Central Asia. So.
SECRETARY BLINKEN: Well, Mr. Minister, Mukhtar, thank you. Thank you for the incredibly warm welcome. It is wonderful for us to be in Kazakhstan. We have an important partnership, and it’s one that we’ve been working to deepen and to strengthen over the last couple of years. As you know well, the United States strongly supports Kazakhstan’s sovereignty, its independence, territorial integrity. And sometimes we just say those words, but they actually have real meaning, and of course, we know in this particular time they have even more resonance (inaudible) than usual.
But I think what’s so striking to me is that, over the last 32 years or so now, our cooperation, our work together has only deepened. We have a strong relationship and one that we are determined to make even stronger, particularly in trying to address the needs of people in both of our countries. We’re committed to engaging at the highest levels, and very, very pleased to be here to advance our cooperation further.
Of course grateful to you not only for the work that we’ll do together in our countries, but also as the host of the C5+1 with our colleagues in Central Asia. So a lot to be done today. Thank you for having us.