The Government intends to move ahead with the ratification of the Turkmenistan Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA). We are proposing this move on the basis that we can best exercise useful influence to promote adherence to internationally accepted governance standards and the rule of law in Turkmenistan through constructive engagement. Furthermore the PCA itself contains specific provisions relevant to human rights which would give the UK and EU additional scope for promoting reform.
While the UK shares many of the European Parliament’s concerns about human rights in Turkmenistan, the benchmarks it has set have no legal basis under the EU Treaties and the UK is not bound by their specific proposals. The UK has raised its concerns about human rights issues in Turkmenistan for a number of years, including at Ministerial level, and we will continue to do so.