Turkish parliament speaker has warned that racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia escalated in Europe and threatened global values such as democracy, human rights and the rule of law.
"As peoples of countries in North Africa and Middle East risked their lives and fight an honorable struggle that highlights joint values of the humanity, in Europe racism, xenophobia, and Islamophobia are on the rise along with economic crisis. It is also of great concern that political parties that portray migrants as source of security drawbacks, unemployment, crime, poverty and other social problems are beefing up their support," Cemil Cicek told a session on intercultural dialogue as part of the Third Consultation Meeting of the Parliament Speakers of the G20 Countries in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Cicek recalled the killing of eight Turks in Germany between years 2000 and 2006 by a neo-Nazi terror group, and Norway attacks in 2011 had shown that terrorism and extremism was not associated with a single religion or a geography but that extreme-right ideologies in Europe also posed a grave security threat.
Cicek said co-existence of differences within a society was only possible through dialogue, adding that when dialogue weakened fundamentalism, terrorism, polarization and discrimination became inevitable.
"This is what we witness in many parts of the world today. It is imperative that the international community acted in a concerted fashion to boost dialogue and cooperation to reverse this tide," Cicek said.
Cicek cited the Alliance of Civilizations project co-launched by Turkey and Spain in 2005 as an example of an international initiative that sought dialogue between cultures and religions, adding that the project was a sign of "the strong eagerness of the international community to live in peace and prosperity around joint values."