Turkey-funded foreign aid increased 99 percent, says prime minister
ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan at a meeting of the Turkish Red Crescent Society (Kızılay). AA PhotoAccording to OECD reports, Turkey’s aid to foreign nations has increased by 99 percent, with official outgoing foreign aid reaching over 2.5 billion dollars in 2012, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said during a meeting of the Turkish Red Crescent Society (Kızılay).
The criteria for being a strong nation had shifted from military capabilities to contribution to peace, he added, saying the increase in Turkish aid to foreign sources helped its power grow.
“In the past those with large armies were considered to be strong nations,” Erdoğan said. “Those with big economies were considered big. Those with large populations were taken as persuasive. These criteria are not enough today.”
“Your strength is now measured by your contributions to peace,” he added. “It is measured by your contribution to education, culture, cooperation, sharing; and by your capacity to intervene in injustice and inequalities, your will to fix wrongs. Your mind and your word are more effective than your fist.”
Erdoğan said Turkey’s helping hand had reached from China to Haiti, Mongolia to Chile, Japan to Congo, Afghanistan to Somalia, and Myanmar to Palestine.
“We are known all around the world with our flag,” Erdoğan said. “We give hope to all those who see us as representatives of peace, tolerance and aid.”
The Turkish Red Crescent Society had reached over 4 million people, Erdoğan added, in the course of three years, over a span of 31 countries. Over 285 million dollars were spent in operations across the globe, with operations that included direct intervention, or educating others worldwide, he added.