President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, who visited Samarkand on Monday, laid flowers to the grave of the first President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov.

Speaking to the gathered, Nursultan Nazarbayev remembered long years of strong friendship, sincere understanding and support that tied him with Islam Karimov.

“I am sure that the following generations of Uzbek citizens and leaders will always remember Islam Karimov.,” Nursultan Nazarbayev’s press service quoted him as saying. “His great legacy and results of his state activities will be studied by descendants, and his doings will be engraved with golden letters in the history of Uzbek people. He was a world-known leader, whose name was linked with formation and economic growth of the country, as well as improvement of people’s welfare. We have lost a great person.”

Nursultan Nazarbayev emphasized the invaluable role of the first President of Uzbekistan in strengthening historical and strategic ties between the two brotherly countries.

“Kazakh and Uzbek people have always moved towards each other,” President of Kazakhstan said. “With Islam Abduganiyevich, we signed the treaty on eternal friendship at Khoja Ahmed Yasavi mausoleum in 1998, and our relations have always been based on this agreement. Kazakhstan has always been and will be close to Uzbek people, we share with you all joys and empathize together in difficult times.”

Nursultan Nazabayev also met Tatyana Karimova, widow of President Islam Karimov, and expressed deep condolences on behalf of people of Kazakhstan and his own.