Janurary 27, 2021
We witness that racist and discriminatory ideologies are getting stronger in various parts of the world and that there is a drastic escalation in hate speech and crimes. The violent attacks, especially against the places of worship such as mosques, synagogues and churches, are spreading. Cultural racism turns into a security threat that captures politics, makes daily life difficult, and undermines people's will to live together. With the coronavirus pandemic, discrimination against some segments of society with different ethnic identities, religions, languages, and appearances has also climbed. The prevalence of these actions to digital platforms today should also be carefully monitored.
Cultural racism turns into a security threat that captures politics, makes daily life difficult, and undermines people's will to live together.
However, the tragic events that took place in the last century have shown how deep wound racist ideologies could inflict. The signs of the Holocaust, the Bosnian, Rwandan, and Cambodian genocides, in which millions of people lost their lives, were evident with systematic discrimination, marginalisation, and rising hate speech long before these massacres. All these genocides, which went down in history as the disgrace of humanity, are live examples that remind the international community of its responsibility to fight against all kinds of discrimination and prevent crimes against humanity.
The most important lesson to be drawn from these regrettable events is that states, with a human-oriented approach, do not remain indifferent to humanitarian crises. Fight against these hate speeches posing a threat to global peace, security and stability is not only the duty of the victims but of all of us as humankind. If we do not say "stop" to the racist terrorism today, the next generations will have to pay the price of such negligence along with us. In this cause, Turkey has and will put in significant efforts in all international platforms of which it is a member, particularly in the Alliance of Civilizations.
It is the shared responsibility of the international community to protect those who are subjected to violence due to their beliefs and identities and to establish a culture of peace based on respect for differences. It is far beyond being a mere moral attitude that should be adopted by every state, but also a contractual obligation under the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Each and every international organisation, government, media, civil society, religious group and opinion leader have essential roles to play in this context.
In the light of this thought, we call on the international community to take the necessary measures to prevent tragedies such as the Holocaust, Bosnia, Rwanda and Cambodia from happening again. We invite all humanity to adopt a global attitude towards genocide and crimes against humanity and to display this attitude with determination.
We invite all humanity to adopt a global attitude towards genocide and crimes against humanity and to display this attitude with determination.
On this occasion, I respectfully recall the memories of the victims of the genocide and wish peace, security and prosperity for the whole world, with the hope of a future where all kinds of discriminatory and hate speech will end, and genocide and crimes against humanity will not be experienced.
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
President of the Republic of Turkey