Erdogan visits CERN in Switzerland
Following a G-20 meeting on the global economic crisis in Washington, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday proceeded to Switzerland. As co-chair of the Alliance of Civilizations Project, Erdogan first attended the opening ceremony of the new Chamber for Human Rights and the Alliance of Civilizations in the local UN office. Adorned by prominent Spanish painter Miguel Barcelo, the hall was dedicated by Spain's King Juan Carlos and Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, the alliance's co-chair. The premier later visited the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), which this September carried out an important experiment trying to create conditions similar to just after the Big Bang. During the visit, CERN Director Robert Aymar briefed Erdogan about work at the facility, saying that over 2,300 scientists work at CERN, which last year had a budget of €610 million. Aymar added that Turkey, the US , Russia , Japan , India , Israel and European Union member states are among leading observer countries in the organization. Nearly 100 Turkish researchers are contributing to CERN's work, he said. Writing in CERN's guestbook, Erdogan said that Turkey would continue to work with the organization in the belief that its experiments, including the recent landmark Big Bang research, would open up new horizons for science and serve humanity. Erdogan also wrote that Turkish scientists taking part in CERN projects constitute an important opportunity for both Turkey and the organization. The premier also visited the main accelerator tunnel used in the experiment, and met with Turkish scientists and students there. State Minister Mehmet Aydin accompanied Erdogan during the visit.