Turkmen amb. to Iran urges Iranians to visit Turkmenistan at Nowruz

TEHRAN, Feb. 28 (MNA) – Turkmenistan ambassador to Iran says his country does not have visa waiver with any country, vowing that Iranians will receive visas easily to visit his country for new year celebrations.

Ahmad Ghorbanov told MNA correspondent that his country does not have visa waivers with any country, and that makes it difficult to travel there, emphasizing that they see no hurdles on the way of issuing visas for Iranians to visit his country.

He said that any Iranian travel agency can apply for a tourist visa, provided that it has a contract with an agency in Turkmenistan, or an individual in Turkmenistan sends an invitation to them.

Mr. Ghorbanov added “It is true that we do not have a great demand for tourist visas to our country, and we may not be as much attractive for tourists as Thailand or Turkey, but so far, the agencies that have contracts with Turkmenistan have not been denied visas,” adding “our only reason for stricter visa issuance for tourists compared to other countries is that it has negative consequences, such as drug trafficking into our country. That's why the Turkmen government says those who send an invitation to tourists should accept responsibility.”

Ghorbanov went on to add "Iran and Turkmenistan were close to have visa waivers and to have direct flights, but now we do not have. We already have a border crossing visa for the people living on the two sides of the border between us who can travel up to 45 kilometers across the border.”

He also asserted "the Turkmen government has invested $ 5 billion in a famous tourist resort along the Caspian Sea, with a number of 30 5-star hotels ready to come to effect," adding “this coastal town is ready to host international competitions in the future. The area was a dry and desert land, but after the investment, it has now become a tourist destination.”

Ghorbanov concluded his exposition by stressing that Nowruz is of high importance for his country, adding that they are going to celebrate this year’s Nowruz at a dome-shaped building called ‘Nowruz Palace,’ with a capacity of 3,000 people.

KI/4167083

News Code 132492

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