Süleyman ŞENSOY
Süleyman ŞENSOY
TASAM Başkanı / Chairman
Release Date : 7/1/2009

The importance of Civil Society Organizations which is a serious indica- tor of democratization keeps increasing each passing day. Several civilian associations intending to undertake social responsibilities voluntarily con- tribute in maintaining social peace between the society and the government in their own countries and play important roles in establishing cooperation between nations and founding dialogue and tolerance between cultures.

The fact that Civilizations meet within a common frame, sharing their opinions within the frames of mutual respect and tolerance, doubtlessly bears great significance regarding future of the world. Great majority of these Civil Society Organizations, the number of which increase at high rate at interna- tional platform is in cooperation in the fields they operate.

The number of CSOs in the African continent increases at the same rate with those in other continents and the said CSOs undertake important roles in development of Africa and its integration with global society within the process of globalization. CSOs in Africa now develop firm coalitions within the cooperation rapidly growing. Besides that, the African governments and international society supports efforts and implementations in this aspect.

The Government of Turkish Republic and the governmental organiza- tions are in the effort of developing their relations with the African nations with accelerating rate each day. Turkey aims at settlement of the problems of the African nations and the fact that it supports a lot of projects in this aspect, reflects its decisiveness in this matter. On the other hand, the African nations evaluate Turkey as a sincere country which does not bear any political agenda on their side.

Turkey has close relations with the African nations not only geographi- cally but also emotionally. All through the history, positive developments observed in political and economical relations regarding decisive and system- atic politics implemented for the purpose of strengthening our relations with Africa within the frames of friendship and brotherhood based on mutual ben- efits to meet the requirements of today's world, have to be reduced also to individual level.

10 Türk ve Afrikalı Sivil Toplum Kuruluşları / Turkish and African Civil Society Organizations

Today it is observed that when summits are achieved at the level of Head of States and Governments, CSOs also come together synchronously to ana- lyze their problems and develop common forums. Mutual visits and negotia- tions realized between Turkish and African statesmen have to be more effec- tive before societies, the relations have to be spread also between the CSOs and activities have to be arranged that produce effective results in various sub- jects and the CSOs have to know each other more closely. Thus the decisions taken at these peaks may be spread to the foundation of societies through CSOs and to be implemented much more effectively.

In the Millennium Declaration of the United Nations and in achieving the Millennium Development Goals in the 57th Ordinary Session of the general Assembly of the UN, the importance of the CSOs have been emphasized and it has bee stated that the efforts spent in this aspect are to affect the said process positively.

Through the meetings to be held within the frames of exclusive discipline of the leading CSOs representatives of Turkey and Africa, it shall be possible to determine the common cooperation fields and to develop constructive dia- logues aimed at our date and to future as the result of sharing knowledge and experiences already gained.

The project of "Turkish-African Civil Society Organizations Forum" intended for tracking closely the developments occurring in Turkey and Africa, to analyse the information we acquired, to develop a consistent and applicable for a joint future, to remove the deficiencies to occur at the easiest possible way and to evaluate in the best possible way the chances to provide mutual benefits, has been planned by the African Institute of Turkish-Asian Center for Strategic Studies (TASAM) in order to form a consistent coopera- tion platform.

We hope that the "Turkish-African Civil Society Organizations Forum" we realized in istanbul between the dates of August 14-16, 2008 to contribute in development of tolerance, cooperation and communication between the Turkish- African civilizations and to maintain global peace and consistency. Thereby, transfer of the prepared study from a written source to the relevant parties, shall provide to obtain more productive results than the cooperation process.

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