Erdoğan calls for unity among young Muslims amid global crises


President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Wednesday urged young Muslims to empower themselves, shoulder their responsibilities and stand united in the face of ongoing crises and the rise of Islamophobia in the West.

Speaking to a youth forum in Istanbul on Wednesday, the Turkish president also called on Muslims to speak out against the injustices they are witnessing.

“Muslims should take responsibility for their own peace and well-being, as well as the security and future of all mankind, and speak out against the injustices they witness,” Erdoğan said in his speech. video message to the Islamic Cooperation Youth Forum (4th ICYF General Assembly).

He noted that global developments, including terrorism, unprecedented security concerns and the COVID-19 pandemic which pose a serious threat to humanity, have particularly affected Muslim countries.

“While on the one hand, Muslims in a vast region grapple with conflict, migration, poverty and disease, they also struggle against the rise of Islamophobia in the West on the other,” he said. Erdoğan said in a televised message broadcast during the Fourth General Assembly. of the Islamic Cooperation Youth Forum in Istanbul on Wednesday.

Citing one of his long-standing maxims that “the world is bigger than five”, in reference to the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council in a call to reform the body, Erdoğan said that Turkey called attention to global injustice at every opportunity. .

He told the young Muslims that they should not fall into the traps set by the “imperialists” to separate them and be united.

“We want to see you play a more active role in politics, academia, sports, commerce and social spheres. Don’t let anyone separate you based on your ethnicity or cultural differences,” the president said.

Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister Yavuz Selim Kıran also pointed out that the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is the second largest international organization in the world.

The OIC Youth Forum is an important platform that uplifts future leaders, he said, adding that Turkey will continue to support the ICYF in all fields.

According to its website, ICYF is an international, non-commercial and non-partisan organization bringing together the major apex youth organizations of the OIC Member States as well as international youth organizations operating in the OIC region and organizations youth groups representing significant Muslim minorities around the world.

The forum was established during its founding general assembly held in Baku, Azerbaijan from December 1-3, 2004, in accordance with resolution No .: 15/31-C adopted by the 31st session of the Islamic Conference of Ministers of Business foreign held in June. 14-16, 2004, in Istanbul, Turkey. It was granted the status of an affiliated institution of the OIC by virtue of Resolution No .: 3/32-C adopted by the 32nd session of the Islamic Conference of Foreign Ministers held on June 28-30, 2005, in Sana’a. , Yemen. .

The ICYF describes its mission as strengthening “the capacity of OIC youth through strategies, policy frameworks, programs and projects promoting civic engagement, holistic education, capacity building and best practices addressing the critical issues of unemployment, health and well-being, limited opportunities, extremism and social exclusion while strengthening their capacities for intellectual development and leadership, scientific and technological innovation, entrepreneurship, media and communication informed by a shared Islamic heritage, universal culture and values. His vision is described as envisioning “empowered youth in the OIC region realizing their full potential for the sustainable development of their communities, nations and world, driven by the Islamic values ​​of cooperation, excellence and unity”.

The highest decision-making body of the ICYF is its general assembly.

The opening ceremony of the 4th ICYF General Assembly in Istanbul was kicked off with a welcoming speech from ICYF President Taha Ayhan, which was followed by video messages from Erdoğan and Kıran.

Ayhan is expected to present the work and strategy report of the forum to the OIC members during the two-day assembly at the Istanbul Grand Cevahir Hotel.

Within the council, which is attended by representatives from a total of 56 member countries, the forum’s Islamic cooperation strategy for youth, youth development, economic empowerment, culture, arts, sports, networks and environmental issues need to be discussed.

Statistics and concrete conclusions on projects developed in these areas will be shared with members. The ICYF General Assembly will conclude on Thursday with the approval of the forum resolutions, the upcoming president election schedule and a discussion of the general assembly mechanics.

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