Erdogan urges protection and improvement of Turkey's foundations
Those who don't know or teach their history and fail to protect their cultural and historical heritage cannot face the future, said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday. At a meeting marking the start of Foundations Week, he said that the Turkish people have a deep-rooted civilization based on foundations. "While the notion of civil society has a background of nearly two centuries in the West," he added, "Turks are members of a civilization that has embraced this notion as its backbone through foundations established over 1,000 thousand years ago." Alluding to legendary mystic poet Mevlana Rumi, Erdogan said, "Like a compass, one of our feet should hold firm while the other roams the world. It is our responsibility to establish our future based on the heritage of our history. While we firmly set one of our feet on our history, with the other we should catch the future." Stressing that no healthy future is possible through exclusive focus on the economy or foreign policy while ignoring other key areas such as culture, history and social solidarity, Erdogan also spoke about government efforts over the last seven years to improve Turkey's foundations culture and help the needy. The meeting was also attended by Parliament Speaker Koksal Toptan, Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc, other Cabinet ministers and representatives of non-governmental organizations. During the meeting, the most successful foundations of the last year were honored.