For the next year, Bursa in Turkey will be holding the title of the Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2022. The opening ceremony, which took place in the Tofaş Indoor Sports Hall in the presence of more than 700 artists from 13 countries and regions of the Turkic World, was honored by the presence of the Secretary General of the Organization of Turkic States, Mr. Baghdad Amreyev, the Minister of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey and Term Coordinator of TURKSOY, H. E. Mr. Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, H. E. Mr. Dusen Kasseinov, the Secretary General of TURKSOY, Binali Yıldırım, a former Prime Minister of Turkey, at the same time, the President of the Council of Wisemen of the Organization of Turkic States, Yakup Canbolat, the Governor of Bursa, as well as Alinur Aktaş, the Mayor of Bursa. The Representative Office of the Organization of Turkic States in Budapest was represented by Hungarian and Turkish project managers Ms. Aida Somfai and Mr. Ali Kilicarslan Topuz respectively.
At the opening of the event, Mr. Binali Yıldırım, who also took the floor and delivered an opening speech, said: “The Turkic World is growing further. We will be united and strong. Together we will be the Turkic World. We are witnessing some distressing events in our region nowadays and this shows us once again that we must be stronger and more united. We must stand together in solidarity with each other. We must preserve our brotherhood like the apple of our eye.”
In his speech, Mr. Mehmet Nuri Ersoy said that with its rich cultural heritage, Bursa is a city with a privileged position. Indeed, it has unique items of cultural heritage which are extremely age-old. “I would like to express my gratitude to all artists for their wonderful show tonight. Today the world is going through troublesome times. Hence, I think that the joint activities that we are carrying out in these difficult times are even more meaningful and important.”
Bagdad Amreyev, who said that such events bring about major achievements, further added: “Culture is our most important field of activity. Indeed, TURKSOY, which brings us together on the basis of culture and cultural activities, was the first international organization of the Turkic World. Culture is our common identity”.
The Secretary General of TURKSOY, Ambassador Kasseinov, who also delivered a speech at the opening of the event, said that whatever may happen, the Turkic peoples must always claim ownership of their common history and cultural values which hold them together and that therefore, they must also honor and preserve their national feasts and traditions so as to remain united in solidarity with one another. Secretary General Kasseinov added: “As you know, Nevruz Day celebrations of TURKSOY are strongly appreciated and looked forward to every year. Besides this tradition of ours, the Cultural Capital of the Turkic World, which we designate every year, is another major project which brings about cultural and artistic revival and dynamism to the cities which are designated as such every year. Hence, I am more than pleased to witness both the Nevruz Day celebrations and the opening of the Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2022 in a city like Bursa which holds an important position in Turkish history.”
The Mayor of the Metropolitan Municipality of Bursa, Mr. Alinur Aktaş, who also delivered an opening speech, said: “Today is a very important day for Bursa which is a city with a rich cultural heritage and long-dating history. As you all know, the city of Bursa was designated as Cultural Capital of the Turkic World 2022 at the 38th Term Meeting of the Permanent Council of Ministers of Culture of the International Organization of Turkic Culture (TURKSOY) which carries out activities to promote Turkic culture, language, history, art, traditions and customs to future generations. Hence, I would like to express my gratitude to all those who deemed our city, which was once the capital of the Ottoman Empire, worthy of this title. There is much more to Bursa than what one can read or hear about it. One must come to Bursa to know it.”
Following the opening speeches, the Secretary General of TURKSOY, Ambassador Kasseinov handed over the title of “The Cultural Capital of the Turkic World” to the Mayor of the Metropolitan Municipality of Bursa, Mr. Alinur Aktaş.
The opening speeches were followed by a wonderful show, featuring artists from the Turkic World and the Balkan countries who presented the audience with the colors, the folk art, the traditional attires and music of the Turkic world.