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Press Release Regarding The Summit Meeting Of The Heads Of State/government Of The South East European Cooperation Process (seecp) And Summit Forum On Cultural Corridors , 15.06.2010

“The Summit Meeting of the Heads of State/Government of the South East European Cooperation Process (SEECP)” and “Eighth Meeting of the Summit Forum of the Heads of State of South East European Countries on Cultural Corridors” will be held on 23 June 2010 in Istanbul. The Meetings will be hosted by the President of the Republic of Turkey, H.E. Abdullah Gül.

Prior to the Summits, in order to round up the preparations thereof, the Meetings of the SEECP Political Directors and Cultural Corridors of South East Europe Experts as well as the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC) Annual Meeting will take place on 21 and 22 June, respectively. Subsequently, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey, H.E. Ahmet Davutoğlu will be hosting the Meeting of the SEECP Ministers of Foreign Affairs also on 22 June.

Turkey has been carrying out the Chairmanship-in-Office of the SEECP since June 2009. The SEECP Summit constitutes the final and most significant event of the Turkish Chair, and will be attended by the Heads of State/Government of 11 SEECP Participating States as well as high level representatives from other countries and international organizations such as the EU, NATO, UN, OSCE, CoE and BSEC. At the Summit, a “Summit Declaration” is to be adopted.

SEECP Chairmanship-in-Office will be handed over to Montenegro at the end of the Summit.

During its SEECP Chairmanship-in-Office, Turkey, encouraged and inspired by common human, historical and cultural accumulation inherited by the Balkan countries, as well as shared values and targets, the primary one being the integration with the European and Euro-Atlantic institutions, that bring them together, has sought to deepen regional cooperation through fostering a common vision for the future and thereby contributing to the peace, stability and prosperity of the region. Our Chairmanship’s motto “From Shared History to Common Future” is the expression of this understanding. In this respect, we have implemented an intense program of events, including wide range of sectorial meetings and activities at ministers and experts level, along with high level political gatherings organized every year by various Turkish ministries and agencies.

Summit Forums of the Heads of State of South East European Countries on Cultural Corridors, conducted under different themes in cooperation with UNESCO and Council of Europe, take the lead in transmitting to the next generations our common cultural heritage as a historical bond between past and future, and plays a uniting role towards regional peace, stability and development. This year’s Forum, to be held under the theme of “Music as a Metaphor of Cultural Dialogue in South East Europe”, aims at highlighting the music, forming the basis of our cultural identity through tunes of friendship, as a cultural corridor that needs to be protected and promoted.

These two important events which will be held consecutively this year will attribute even more significance to the Summit Meetings and render us the opportunity to emphasize the understanding of “regional ownership” in light of our common will and vision.