ISIL must be defeated, says former Turkish President Gül
İpek Yezdani - email@example.com ISTANBULThe presidents and former presidents of Eurasian countries attending the 18th Eurasian Economic Summit have stressed the need for international cooperation in struggle against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
“This new phenomenon which is called Daesh definitely must be defeated in the region,” said former Turkish President Abdullah Gül during his speech at the summit, referring to the abbreviation of the jihadist group’s name in Arabic.
“Cooperation between the countries of the region is needed for that. Therefore countries of the region must be in close contact with each other,” Gül said.
He added that ISIL is a phenomenon that is the result of “despair, injustice, poverty, lack of education.”
“It is not enough to shatter it only by military actions. There should also be soft power used besides hard power in order to sweep it away. Therefore the leaders of the region should strongly convince the people of the region,” Gül said.
Former Albanian President Bamir Topi also highlighted the threat from ISIL, saying that the danger coming from ISIL terror showed the need for bilateral and international cooperation both in the region and in Europe.
Bosnia and Herzegovina President Marinko Cavara drove attention to the fact that the presence of ISIL has triggered Islamophobia and xenophobia in Europe.
“There are still discussions about Islamophobia in Europe. Xenophobia is a lack of understanding and a lack of knowledge and it provokes fear among people. It is up to us, the politicians, to take a responsible attitude and to avoid the negative influence of xenophobia on humankind in the future,” Cavara said.
The Eurasian Economic Summits are annually organized with the active participation of national and international decision makers and experts in the fields of economy, politics, energy, sociology and security.
The purpose of the summits is to bring the countries’ businessmen, politicians and academics together, to help them to cooperate in the fields of economy, democracy and security.
The ISIL threat was also on the agenda of the president of Montenegro, Filip Vujanovic; the president of Macedonia, Gjorge Ivanov; as well as former Bulgarian Presidents Petar Stopyanov, former Czech Republic President Vaclav Klaus, former Mongolian President Punsaalma Ochirbat, former Moldovan President Petru Lucinschi, former Serbian President Boris Tadic, former Slovenian President Danilo Türk, former Latvian President Valdis Zatlers, and former Romanian President Emil Constantinescu.