Turkey to revive Alliance of Civilizations initiative

Foreign minister says 2005 Turkish-Spanish platform meant to hold back extremism, boost intercultural dialogue

Turkey to revive Alliance of Civilizations initiative

Turkey will revive the intercultural UN “Alliance of Civilizations” initiative, the country's foreign minister pledged on Tuesday.

"We co-chair the Alliance of Civilizations with Spain and we'll revive it again. We'll revive it to hold back extremist currents and boost intercultural and inter-civilizations dialogue through religion,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a Turkish university's school year opening ceremony.

“If we don't take these steps, reverse these trends, I’m afraid the world especially Europe will go back to the pre-World War II days, making them the victims of extremist and racist currents.”

Co-sponsored by Turkey and Spain, the Alliance of Civilizations was formed in 2005 with the aim of building mutual respect among people of different cultural and religious identities.

Cavusoglu stated that under the initiative, Turkey encourages all countries to have peace and stability.

He stressed the importance of Turkey's soft power at the international level through, for instance, humanitarian aid and jobs projects.

"Strengthening soft power is one of our foreign policy priorities," he remarked.