WORLD TURKIC FORUM 1st Wise Persons Council Meeting

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World Turkic Forum 1st Wise Persons Council Meeting which was suggested to be formed at 1st World Turkic Forum; has been held on 3rd of April 2013 within the margin of 2nd World Turkic Forum. The names of the persons who have attended to Wise Persons Council Meeting are as follows:...

Draft Final Report (Summary)

World Turkic Forum 1st Wise Persons Council Meeting which was suggested to be formed at 1st  World Turkic Forum; has been held on 3rd of April 2013 within the margin of 2nd World Turkic Forum. The names of the persons who have attended to Wise Persons Council Meeting are as follows:

 

A. ISTTP WISE PERSONS COUNCIL LIST

Ambassador (R) Halil Akıncı, General Secretary of Turkic Council

Prof. Ahat Andican, Istanbul University, Former State Minister of Republic of Turkey

Hakkı Atun, Near East University, Former Prime Minister of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus

Dr. Veyis Güngör, President of Union of European Turkish Democrats, Netherlands

Prof. Hakkı Keskin, Honorary President of Turkish Society in Germany

Prof. Kadırali Konkobayev, Kyrgyzstan-Turkey Manas University, Kyrgyzstan

Prof. Onur Bilge Kula, Hacettepe University, Turkey

Prof. Dr. Emine Gürsoy Naskali, Marmara University, Turkey

Anar Rızayev, Member of Writers Union, Azerbaijan

Olcas Süleymenov, Kazakhstan Permanent Delegation to UNESCO, Writer, Kazakhstan

Prof. Vamık Volkan, University of Virginia, Center for the Study of Mind and Human Interaction, USA

Prof. Nadir Devlet, Istanbul Commerce University, Turkey

B.  Agenda of WTF Wise Persons Council

1.         Introduction

2.         Missions and Functions of Wise Persons Council (2013 Action Plan)

3.      Opinions and Possible Contributions of Wise Persons Council to the main theme of 2nd World Turkic Forum which is “TURKIC DIASPORA AND TURKIC WORLD VISION 2023”

4.         Think Tanks in Turkic World, Civil Society and Cooperation

5.         Reflections of Global and Regional Problems to Turkic World

6.         Other issues

 

C. SUMMARY OF MEETING NOTES

1. Discussions on Diaspora

It is necessary to make a distinctive and inclusive definition of Turkic Diaspora. For instance; Azerbaijanis, Kyrgyz, Uzbeks and other Turkic people living in Germany should be included to this definition. A million Kyrgyz have left Kyrgyzstan for the past 20 years. Kyrgyz in Russia, China and Kazakhstan have been experiencing a series of problems. On the other hand financial contribution of Kyrgyz Diaspora to Kyrgyzstan is equal to country’s national income.

Every year people from Central Asian countries immigrate to other countries particularly to Moscow-Russia. It is difficult to evaluate Turkic Diaspora in a general scope. Therefore it is hard to focus on certain subjects through diaspora. Especially Turkic Diaspora in USA and Russia is consisting of wealthy people. It is necessary to create self-confidence and organizational consciousness among this wealthy community and increase cooperation between Turkic societies in the world.

Turkic Diaspora is expecting from their countries of origin to solve the problems in education, culture and economy. Whereas Armenian and Greek Diasporas do not require any help from Armenia or Greece and they solve their problems on their own. NGOs in Turkic Diasporas are also expecting their problems to be solved by the country of their origin.

Immigrants from Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) have an interesting status among diaspora. Turkish Cypriots in diaspora have not been given importance for some time. Yet Passport of TRNC is valid in most countries. In this regard; there is lack of organizational structure in TRNC Diaspora.

Institutions such as Yunus Emre; can play a prominent role in Turkic Diaspora. However; some countries such as Germany make it difficult for Turkic Diaspora to benefit from Yunus Emre Institution. Republic of Turkey had remained incapable of moving the rights of Turks living abroad further which were gained in 1970s.

Republic of Turkey has adopted a new mission about Turkic Diaspora in Europe. For instance; opening Ahi-Order and Seven Advices of Mevlana as Konya Criteria into discussion with Christian and Buddhist scholars, translation of Mesnevi into Dutch language, education of youth branch of Turkish political parties in Balkans according to Dutch political system are promising developments. The wishes of the communities that do not related to Turkic people but feel as part of Turkic culture should be taken into consideration. Culture-based projects in Urumqi, Afghanistan and Ürgüp are worthy of commendation. Socio-cultural situation of Turkic people in European countries is pleasing and their unity and intellectual activities have reached to a sufficient level. 

For instance; today there are 23,000 students, 20,000 graduates and 21,000 entrepreneurs in Netherlands. As a matter of fact; in order for diaspora to exist and function properly, an educated and enlightened community is needed. It would not be expected from the Turkish immigrant workers to realize the importance of diaspora in 1970s and 1980s. But the second and third generation diaspora members have been becoming more and more conscious. For instance; there are Turkic literal works that have been translated into German language by diaspora. In order to increase such activities; socio-cultural organizations should be supported.

Language is crucially important for the survival, integrity and effectiveness of diaspora. It is regarded as a positive sign that after English, Turkish is accepted as the second most important foreign language in many German schools.

Rejection of dual citizenship by Germany is a major problem. Turkey does not accept the removal of workers’ Turkish citizenship by German authorities. In this case; Germany will have to accept dual citizenship sooner or later. The issue of dual citizenship is not indispensable but in order for actual state to be legitimized; Turkey should make its best in order to enact required laws.

Full-scale six-month researches and surveys that have been conducted through European continent should also be applied in Turkic World and Diaspora. The effectiveness of diaspora does not solely depend on numeric data, prominence should therefore be given to bring up qualified individuals.

There are serious weaknesses and problems among NGOs of Diaspora. In order for members of Diaspora to protect the interest of their inhabitant country and international interests of their country of origin, required steps in the official and civilian levels should be taken in order to strengthen harmony and to increase effectiveness among NGOs.

Activities with regards to protection of Turkic identity and development of Turkic consciousness are vitally important for Turkic World to be effective in national and global arenas. In this regard; educational and cultural activities should be given importance.  Restoration of Orkhon Monuments should be completed which was eradicated by Soviet soldiers and the protection of historical artifacts should be given importance. At this point; Turkic Academy which is in its establishment stage should be supported financially in order o make studies about historical artifacts and the other areas. With regards to Armenian Issue; experts and members of Turkish-Armenian commission should cooperate.      

One of the biggest problems in Turkic World is the status of women in Turkic societies. Strengthening the status of women in Turkic World would help to solve many problems in Turkic countries.

It is inappropriate to make Turkic people who are not citizens of Turkish Republic wait to acquire visa at the border gates. This situation should be immediately fixed. Embassies of Republic of Turkey should not only be interested in well-being of its own citizens but also the citizens of Turkic countries.

Students from Turkic countries who are doing their masters and PhDs in foreign countries particularly in cities like Paris, London, Washington, New York, Beijing, Moscow, Cairo, Sydney, Tokyo and New Delhi; should be supported.

Intense Turkish presence in the Balkans makes it necessary to conduct relations with Balkan countries. It is necessary to improve relations with the South American Armenian community and the Southern Cyprus, to welcome former Ottoman non-Muslim communities and to be interested in Muslim Romany population in Europe. Besides there is not enough communication with Latin American community called “El Turco” which makes 10% of Latin America population when even Syria has relations with “El Turco”. It seems meaningless for Turkey not to have a communication with former Ottoman citizens who now live in South America. The different approaches from these communities to Islamic and Turkic identity should not prevent us from having relations with these people.  

In some European countries such as Austria, NGOs of Turkic Diaspora do not put Turkish or any other Turkic language as a pre-condition in many issues. If a community forgets its language, it will result in eradication of its national identity and loosen the bond with motherland. The studies and activities which aim to protect the language of diaspora citizens should be supported.

  

2. Discussions with Regards to Armenian Issue

There is an increase in the activities and attempts for the world wide recognition of so-called Armenian Genocide in the recent years. These activities and attempts date back to 1924 and Turkish side has failed to respond these allegations. Moreover, failure in the policy coordination between Azerbaijan and Turkey, insufficient support for intellectual activities, failure in studying and publicly announcing the histories of the French, British and US in this regard and failure in providing support from Turkic countries are the reasons behind the recognition of so-called Armenian Genocide by various countries. 

During 1970s; when the first allegations with regards to so-called Armenian Genocide started; it was argued that 300,000 Armenians were deported, then this number went up to 500,000 and today it is claimed by the Armenian Diaspora that the number of people who were deported in 1915 is 1, 5 million.

Positive effects of academic activities in this regard cannot be denied but these are not sufficient. It is necessary to focus on tools like movies, plays, art exhibitions, novels which would bring results in short term and to concentrate on popularizing art exhibitions in USA like Sultan Suleiman exhibition. Summer schools and exchange programs between universities should be organized and also writing historical books with regards to this issue in related countries’ languages is crucially important. Armenian and Turkish archives should be promoted sufficiently.       

The number of people who work for the Turkish Embassies should be increased to a proper level in countries where intense activities of recognition of so-called Armenian genocide have been carried out.

The Turkic Genocides for the past 200 years should be taken into consideration and should be used as an argument against so called Armenian Genocide allegations.

Currently, Armenian Diaspora has a strong position in Western countries. But activities with a pro-active and historical vision should be conducted in countries which are on their way to become global and regional powers; to prevent Armenian Diaspora to be organized.

Khojaly Massacre should be given its rightful importance. But it should not be compared with Armenian Genocide. Good will gestures towards Armenians up until today have been taken and evaluated as weakness. From now on more effective policies should be adopted.

It is necessary to promote Armenian soldiers who died in Battle of Çanakkale in 1915; a photo album with pictures of Armenian soldiers and pashas in Ottoman Empire should be prepared. As the 100th year anniversary of both so called Armenian Genocide and Battle of Çanakkale are approaching; a photo album or an exhibition with these kinds of pictures could provide advantage to Turkish side.

 

3. Suggestions

It is decided by Wise Persons Council; as a first operational mission a hot topic or a generic subject will be adopted. After consulting to related institutions details of this mission will be shared with the public.

It is necessary to organize an award ceremony for the recognized studies and researches and to present qualified declarations in order to increase the attention to World Turkic Congress.

Naturally in the first meeting of World Turkic Forum; the issues were discussed in a general theme. But with the 2nd World Turkic Forum; specific issues were began to be addressed.

In order to increase cultural and scientific interaction and to develop a common discourse in Turkic World; exchange programs similar to ERASMUS and summer schools between universities in Turkic Republics should be organized.

There were various problems in the fields of politics, culture and economics which can only be solved with cooperation and coordination. In order to increase coordination and cooperation mutual studies should be conducted. 

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Areas

Continents ( 5 Area )
Action
 Content ( 613 ) Event ( 167 )
Areas
Africa 64 239
Asia 71 279
Europe 13 52
Latin America & Carribean 12 38
North America 7 5
Regions ( 4 Area )
Action
 Content ( 256 ) Event ( 43 )
Areas
Balkans 22 124
Middle East 17 103
Black Sea and Caucasus 2 23
Mediterranean 2 6
Identity Fields ( 2 Area )
Action
 Content ( 376 ) Event ( 66 )
Areas
Islamic World 51 329
Turkish World 15 47
Turkey ( 1 Area )
Action
 Content ( 363 ) Event ( 49 )
Areas
Turkey 49 363

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