President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President, Ms Atambayeva, ladies and gentlemen,
My talks with the President of Kyrgyzstan just ended. As always, they were held in a businesslike, constructive and friendly atmosphere.
I would like to thank you once again, Mr President, and all our Kyrgyz colleagues for their openness to cooperation and sincere willingness to develop mutually beneficial multifaceted cooperation.
Russia and Kyrgyzstan are linked by centuries-old traditions, friendship and neighbourliness, strong ties of strategic partnership and alliance. They constitute a reliable foundation for moving ahead with confidence.
The year 2017 is of particular importance for Russian-Kyrgyz relations. Exactly 25 years ago, special ties were established: an agreement on friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance was signed.
It is gratifying that we have approached this anniversary with significant results to show. Our two countries are closely cooperating in the political, economic, humanitarian and military-technical spheres, and actively working together within the framework of the Eurasian Economic Union. Russia and Kyrgyzstan are both engaged in promoting security and stability in Central Asia, as well as fighting international terrorism, drug trafficking and organised crime.
As the Kyrgyz saying goes, what does not require much work is of little use. The Declaration on Strengthening the Alliance and Strategic Partnership signed today does not just sum up the results of many years of successful cooperation between our countries in various areas; it also sets new large and ambitious tasks for the future. I am confident that we will be able to achieve them by working together, harmoniously and purposefully, which we are fully capable of doing.
I propose a toast to the growing friendship between Russia and Kyrgyzstan, to the well-being and prosperity of our peoples, to the health of all those present, and to the health of the President of Kyrgyzstan.
President of Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev: Friends and colleagues,
I am deeply moved by the high praise of the work done during the years of my Presidency in Kyrgyzstan to create a really solid foundation for our allied, strategic relations to continue developing into the future without end.
I can probably admit today that during all these years I often argued with Mr Putin, and not only about work. However, sometimes we simply discussed historical matters. I recall that during his recent visit to Bishkek he asked: “Why is this building called ‘Enesai?’” I replied, “This is the Yenisei. Enesai means mother-river.” We discussed many issues and joked around, too.
I remember once we went so far… Baikal, Yenisei, Saratov, Siberia. Mr Putin said, “I see these are all Kyrgyz names, Kyrgyz words, but just do not ask to have them back.”
However, speaking seriously we agreed that Russia is the ancestral home, the centre, a country that engendered a huge civilisation – the Altai civilisation. I believe that one day the Russian Altai will become a sacral centre for the numerous peoples that live in Central Asia, China and beyond the Black Sea. One day it will become a sacral centre in Russia.
Many nations will understand that Russia is the centre of friendship, a country that brings only positive, bright things no matter how hard some forces in the world may try to demonise it. Of course, we see that all this nonsense is becoming laughable. I can say today with certainty that Mr Putin has never tried to do anything bad for any country. Quite the contrary. We know the reasons for many decisions. I know that those who make accusations against Russia or the President of Russia should look in the mirror. If they looked in the mirror, they would see who is really escalating tensions in the world.
I must admit, I love Russia very much. I am fond of Russian literature and I love the Russian people. When people in Kyrgyzstan want to describe a person as honest and straightforward, we say they have a Russian character. This shows the attitude of our entire nation to Russia and the Russian people.
Here is one example. When Mr Putin visited, I took him to the Memorial of the Survivors of the Siege of Leningrad. During the siege, many children were brought from Leningrad to Kyrgyzstan. One woman here in Issyk-Kul gave shelter to 150 children. Many kids lost their passports or rather birth certificates and they were registered as Kyrgyz. We have lots of red-headed kids, especially in Issyk-Kul.
Believe me; we truly have an ancient common history. When you take some ancient words or even modern words and try to get to their origins, you will see that everything is common, everything is native. God willing, we will preserve it and never yield to some enemies. We must preserve the feeling of fraternity, the feeling of kinship between our countries. I think that during these years, we have made a start on this and I believe it will only grow stronger with every year. I want to continue working to make sure our nations remember their common history and their common roots and to prevent anyone from trying to do what very nearly happened when they attempted to tear Kyrgyzstan away from its ancestral home and their fraternal nation. We do not wish to go through anything like that again.
I would like to raise a toast to the great Russian nation and, I dare say, to the great President of the great Russian nation. No matter how much dirt is slung at him – and this is the craze both in your country and in ours – if Vladimir Putin had not existed… I remember how Rossel began to establish the Urals Republic or the Siberian Republic. I think if a second disaster had taken place and Russia had fallen apart after the collapse of the Soviet Union, this would have been a terrible ordeal not only for the peoples of Russia but also of the entire world. It is essential to remember that this is the man who preserved Russia.
I wish happiness and prosperity to all the peoples of Russia. “What does not kill us only makes us stronger,” as they say. I wish you success, Mr Putin.