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2011’s ambassadors conference to open in Ankara today

03. January 2011. | 07:21

Source: Today's Zaman

Turkey’s ambassadors serving abroad and at Foreign Ministry headquarters will gather today for the opening of a week-long brainstorming session to discuss the foreign policy goals of the country.

Turkey’s ambassadors serving abroad and at Foreign Ministry headquarters will gather today for the opening of a week-long brainstorming session to discuss the foreign policy goals of the country.

This is the third annual ambassadors’ conference being held under the auspices of the Foreign Ministry. The first one was held in Ankara in July 2008 and the second in January 2010 in Ankara and Mardin. This year’s conference will begin in Ankara and continue in the eastern Anatolian province of Erzurum. The theme of the 2008 conference was “Turkish Foreign Policy: Orientations and Priorities,” while “Democracy, Security and Stability: Foreign Policy Outlook for 2010,” was the main theme at the 2010 conference.

“Visionary Diplomacy: Global and Regional Order from Turkey’s Perspective” is the theme of this year’s conference, which will be chaired by Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, according to a written statement released over the weekend by the Foreign Ministry.

The previous two conferences helped analyze global dynamics in a bid to produce the most appropriate foreign policy choices, the ministry said, recalling that following the January 2010 conference, senior-level delegations from the ministry paid visits to several provinces in order to inform public opinion regarding these choices.

“The third conference, which is being held following a one-year hiatus, will serve as an opportunity for re-discussing main issues that are considered a priority in our foreign policy agenda and in international politics; for reviewing the progress that has been made on issues discussed at the second conference; and for assessing our public diplomacy activities -- on which we have gradually focused more in the recent period -- with a forward-looking perspective,” the ministry said, while stressing that the ambassadors’ conference has become a significant part of the ministry’s institutional culture.

According to the ministry, with participation of several ministers and high-level officials from various ministries, the annual conferences also help improving harmonization, coordination and cooperation among different institutions. The presence of such interaction among institutions is key to the implementation of Turkey’s foreign policy vision, the ministry said.

The Ankara session of this year’s conference will be joined by Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul, and the Erzurum session will be joined by Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou, who will deliver speeches to the Turkish diplomats. While in Erzurum, Papandreou will be accompanied by his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who will also address the diplomats.


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