About Us Turkey

Statement by the Chairman H.E. Mr. Ahmet Davutoğlu

Minister  of Foreign Affairs

Republic of Turkey 

Distinguished Minister Kazykhanov,

Honorable Ministers,

Dear Colleagues, 

It is an honor for me to co-chair the 4th CICA Ministerial Meeting along with our host and my dear brother H.E. Minister Yerzhan Kazykhanov.

First of all I would like to thank the CICA Member States for the confidence they have placed upon Turkey by extending the Turkish Chairmanship for a period of two more years. Turkey, who took over the Chairmanship from Kazakistan at the Third CICA Summit held on 8 June 2010 in İstanbul for a period of two years, will continue its Chairmanship until 2014. The next Chairman will take over the Chairmanship in the middle of 2014 while hosting the 4th CICA Summit of Heads of State and Government. 

According to the Rules of Procedure, the CICA Foreign Ministers convene every four years, after an interval of two years from the CICA Summit meetings. Ministerial meetings are the central forum for consultations and examination of all issues related to CICA activities. This fact urges us to come together more often. As you will recall, upon the initiative of the Turkish Chairmanship, an informal meeting of the Foreign Ministers of CICA member states was held for the first time on 26 September 2011 on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. This informal meeting gave us the opportunity to exchange views on a number of issues with regard to CICA and its activities. 

Honourable Ministers,

Dear Colleagues,

Turkey’s chairmanship vision for CICA is to build a system of cooperative security in Asia. Cooperation is a key word in bringing together states with different values and divergent interests. Cooperative security does not require a specific adversary. It is inclusive, non adversarial and non confrontational.  

The answer to the question of how we could develop a cooperative security order in Asia is through dialogue. As the Chairman of CICA, Turkey, over the past two years, has earnestly tried to promote political and security dialogue in CICA. We have tried hard to create an enabling atmosphere for dialogue and invited member states to share their views, ideas and concerns with each other. There are a number of issues, disputes, conflicts in the CICA region. We are aware of the fact that long time disputes, conflicts cannot be settled in a short period of time. We are also very much aware of the fact that CICA is a young organization and it is not realistic for us to deal with long standing disputes and conflicts. Nevertheless by discussing the issues, exchanging and explaining our views, we could make a modest but worthwhile contribution to peace and security in the CICA region.

In my statement for the Commemorative Session, I pointed out that in some cases it is not easy to reach consensus on certain issues even in organizations made up of like-minded countries. We should not forget that organizations with ambitious agendas and long time institutional background are not immune from disagreements.  

In CICA patience is the key word for reaching consensus. In that respect CICA is proceeding forward slowly but surely. In this process there is a definite need for political leadership and vision. At this point, I kindly ask for your valuable support for taking the CICA process forward.

Honourable Ministers,

Dear Colleagues, 

During the last two years CICA Turkish Chairmanship has continued to promote CICA’s Confidence Building Measures in the economic, environmental, human, new threats and challenges and military-political dimensions.

We, first of all, have gone out of our way to promote CICA’s economic dimension. We established an Economic Sub Group under the guidance of Senior Official Committee and tried to gear up the activities in this field. After the first CICA Business Forum held in Bangkok, we convened the Second Business Forum in Istanbul. With the solid support of Russian Federation, Thailand and Kazakhstan, we made a substantive progress in promoting small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and establishing business-to-business contacts among SMEs.

We addressed the new challenges and threats by hosting the CICA Experts Meeting on Combating Terrorism, in Ankara in March 2012. The UN Counter Terrorism Implementation Task Force, the OSCE and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Regional Counter-Terrorism Structure participated in this meeting along with the CICA member states. As the coordinator country of this dimension, we hosted the 1St CICA Chief of Police Meeting in 2010 and organized CICA International Organization for Migration (IOM) Workshop in Antalya in 2011.  

As far as the environmental and human dimensions are concerned, with the active contribution of Mongolia and Kazakhstan, a number of meetings and events were organized. Preparations for establishing a CICA Research and Training Center on Combating Desertification in Asia in Turkey (Konya), is underway.

For the CICA Turkish Chairmanship, Confidence Building Measures in the military-political area are the main building block for constructing cooperative security. More importantly the military-political dimension of CICA apparently forms an important part of future regional security architecture. We are happy that some deliberations for implementation of Confidence Building Measures in military-political dimension have begun in CICA. Although on voluntary basis, initial steps toward implementation of Confidence Building Measures in military-political dimension is encouraging. I want to thank Kazakhstan for its pioneer role for hosting a meeting in Almaty in this dimension and organizing a visit to military establishment for the diplomatic and military representatives of the member states. This first step in this dimension is a modest one. Nevertheless it has a great value for CICA. We will continue to work relentlessly in this dimension.  

Honourable Ministers,

Dear Colleagues,

The lessons learned from the complex developments over the past decade indicate that contemporary challenges cannot be countered successfully unless we combine our efforts.  

For this reason, from our perspective, cooperation is the key word, dialogue is the best means and the cooperative security is the rationale method for establishing a common and indivisible area of security in Asia. We should not forget that more dialogue and better understanding may pave the way for more cooperation.

In concluding my introductory remarks, I would like to express my appreciation for the support extended by the member states to the Turkish CICA Chairmanship. Thanks to your very valuable support and contribution, we have come a long way within the CICA during the first two years of Turkish Chairmanship.