Israel Firms Ties with Turkmenistan

Israel has established diplomatic relations with Turkmenistan, meaning that it now has ties with all of the five Muslim republics of the former Soviet Union and all 15 of the Soviet successor states.

A joint communique formalizing the ties was signed Monday by Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Boris Shihmuradov, deputy head of Turkmenistan’s Cabinet of Ministers.

Monday’s signing has an even more far-reaching import. Reversing decades of Soviet-orchestrated isolation of Israel within the world community, Israel now has diplomatic ties with 131 of the 185 United Nations member nations.

In previous ceremonies this week and last, Peres formalized relations with the Asian nation of Cambodia and the African nations of Gabon, Burkina Faso and Mauritius.

He met last week with Foreign Minister Ahmud Swalay Kasenally of the island republic of Mauritius and with Foreign Minister Pascaline Mserri Bongo of the republic of Gabon.

This week, Peres attended signing ceremonies with Prince Sirivudh of Cambodia and with Foreign Minister Thomas Sanon of Burkina Faso.

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