Recep Tayyip Erdoğan began his passionate and wide-ranging speech by highlighting the humanitarian crises, political conflicts, and social tensions plaguing various regions worldwide, emphasizing the difficulty in addressing these issues amid global economic problems.
He expressed grave concern about the use of terrorism as an instrument in proxy wars in regions like Syria, North Africa, and the Sahel, asserting that it was undermining international security.
The President also touched upon the growing threat of xenophobia, racism, and islamophobia, warning that these issues were reaching alarming levels globally. He stressed the importance of addressing these challenges for the sake of social harmony.
On having expressed gratitude to the international community, including the UN, for coming to his country’s aid after it suffered a major earthquake which claimed over 50,000 lives and caused extensive destruction in February 2023, Mr. Erdogan noted, that “the friendship shown to our country on that very dark day … was an important source of consolation.”
Acting in the same spirit, Türkiye, he added, mobilized extensive help to Libya, where 12,000 people lost their lives with thousands still unaccounted for after the recent devastating storms and floods.
Presenting his country as an active international player, President Erdogan outlined multiple contacts Türkiye had developed with lands both near and far. The country’s relations span the whole world from China and South Asia to Africa and Latin America, but the main scope of attention is on its neighbouring region.
Referring to the ’war on Europe’s eastern borders’ President Erdogan said, “Since the beginning of the Russian-Ukrainian war, we have been endeavouring to keep both our Russian and Ukrainian friends around the table with the thesis that war will have no winners and peace will have no losers,” the Turkish President said.
He stated readiness to step up efforts to end the war through diplomacy and dialogue based on Ukraine’s independence and territorial integrity.
In this context he highlighted the Black Sea Initiative launched together with the UN, which aimed to prevent a global hunger crisis by facilitating the transport of grain through the Black Sea to global markets.
Lamenting the fact that the initiative was no longer in operation, he mentioned a new plan new plan whereby another. Some 1,000,000 tonnes of grain will be released to the countries in dire need around the world.
Mr. Erdogan spoke of the need of the reform of the United Nations, expressing the idea that the institutions established after the Second World War no longer reflect today’s world.
“The world is bigger than five,” he said referring to the five Permanent Members of the Security Council. Advocating for reform, he noted that “the Security Council has ceased to be the guarantor of world security and has become a battleground for the political strategies of only five countries.”
He urged a re-evaluation of the current international institutions to better reflect the realities of today’s world.
He spoke also about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), underscoring the need to eradicate hunger and poverty.
“We find it difficult to accept hunger as an issue, as an unsolved problem, here in the 21st century,” said the President, urging all countries to demonstrate a strong will to realize Sustainable Development Goals.