Baku, August 18, AZERTAC
The first Meeting of the Ministers in Charge of Information and Media of the Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States (Turkic Council) has been held in the Kazakh capital of Astana.
Azerbaijan`s delegation at the event was led by the Presidential Aide for Public and Political Affairs, head of the Department of Public and Political Affairs at the Presidential Administration Ali Hasanov. It included Director General of Azerbaijan State News Agency (AZERTAC) Aslan Aslanov and Director General of the Public Television and Radio Broadcasting Company Jamil Guliyev.
Moderated by Secretary General of the Turkic Council Ramil Hasanov, the event was addressed by TRT Director General Senol Goka, Investment and Development Minister of Kazakhstan Asset Issekeshev and Minister of Culture, Information and Tourism of Kyrgyzstan Altynbek Maksudov.
The meeting heard the report of the coordination group for the establishment of the International Turkic News Channel, and discussed the Turkic Council`s concept for the creation of the channel, joint Cooperation Protocol to be signed by the ministers, Cooperation Protocol to be signed between national television channels of the Turkic Council member countries and Memorandum of Understanding to be inked by news agencies of the council`s member states.
The Azerbaijani President`s Aide for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov addressed the event. “First of all, I warmly welcome the participants of the meeting of the Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States. We also thank the Kazakh side for the excellent organization of this gathering. We are confident that the discussions we will hold and decisions we will adopt during the meeting will have a positive impact on the development of cooperation between our countries in the field of information, and also on the strengthening of relations between media bodies, and on efficient and effective information exchange.”
“The Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States, which plays a unique role in the integration of the Turkic world, has already approved itself as a successful community model. Apart from other advantages, this organization represents a vital platform for discussing the matters relating to complex global and regional geopolitical processes, existing problems, and for searching for ways out and taking adequate measures.”
He said: “Some negative processes that undermine international and regional stability at the same time pose a threat to peace, tranquility, public order in the Turkic world, which is definitely a matter of concern to us. ISIL and PKK terrorism faced by fraternal Turkey, the Armenian military aggression and occupation of the historical Azerbaijani lands, unresolved Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and other similar geopolitical problems are among the important factors that dictate the need to mobilize our efforts in the name of a single target, which is to ensure sustainable peace and security in the Turkic world.”
“Influenced by anti-Turkic and anti-Muslim circles, some international media resources demonstrate an unequivocal hostile position and act to the dictates of certain political groups. In particular, on the eve and during Baku 2015 European Games certain international media outlets consistently published hostile materials against our country, which means that in our time the media are increasingly used as a tool of political pressure.”
“It is with regret that I should note that the great strides made in a short space of time by Azerbaijan, which supports cooperation, peace and tranquility in the region, in socio-economic and political spheres, are hardly highlighted by some leading global media resources. In addition, with the expansion of our success as an independent state we often face media attacks based on preconceived, false accusations,” he said.
Mr Hasanov noted that other Turkic speaking countries that have analogous problems face similar attitude. “A perfect example of this is a dirty campaign regularly conducted by the global media against Turkey, which outstrips many leading countries in terms of political and economic progress. International media organizations, which attack Turkey accusing it of fictional and false genocide, remain silent about the Khojaly genocide committed by Armenians in Azerbaijan in 1992. And a paucity of alternative media resources limits our opportunities to make counter-theses. We see the same in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and other fraternal countries that are part of the Turkic world.”
“Late this year Turkey will host a global event, the 10th annual summit of the G20 leaders. In 2017, Azerbaijan will host the Islamic Solidarity Games and Kazakhstan will organize "Kazakhstan Expo" exhibition. By tradition, we expect that some Western media will launch a fresh phase of efforts to build an environment of distrust of our countries.”
“Similar systematic campaigns against Turkic speaking countries, which share the same language, religion and ethnicity, suggest that this activity is run from a single center and serves one purpose – to prevent the development, unity and equality of our countries. These facts clearly accentuate the necessity of strengthening solidarity among Turkic speaking states, expanding mutual relations in the field of information and giving the world community the true impression of our countries through putting objective news in the global information network,” he said.
“It should be taken into account that today when we have a single information space, information has become an important factor in the development of bilateral relations. In addition, the value of the media as an effective tool of ensuring the formation and expression of public opinion, is growing. Therefore, building a flexible information policy, defining priorities in the global network, ensuring information security of society plays a critical role in the life of any country, including Turkic speaking states.”
“Given all this, we believe that ensuring interaction and solidarity between Turkic speaking states in the mass media, coordinating the activity of media organizations, creating joint media institutions, developing mutual relations with the world's leading media and other measures remain topical. In this context, a protocol on cooperation between the national television channels and a memorandum of understanding between the news agencies of Turkic speaking countries that will be signed today are of particular importance.”
Mr Hasanov said: “An initiative to establish an alternative source of information – the International Turkic News Channel – with the aim of ensuring free access to the global information arena and organizing free activity, consolidating efforts towards preventing smear campaigns against our countries and ending the dependence of Turkic speaking states on biased transnational companies can become not only one of the vital issues representing historical importance for our countries, but can also make a considerable contribution to the building of centralized information policy of the Turkic world.”
“Certain experience that we have gained in this area – successful activity of the Union of Turkic Speaking News Agencies and TRT AVAZ channel - which is largely promoting national and cultural values of Turkic speaking people, gives us reasons to believe that the establishment of the International Turkic News Channel will mark the beginning of a new stage in information policy of Turkic speaking states.”
“This television channel, which will be established using the experience of world-renowned news channels, can play a key role in delivering – in an unbiased and undistorted manner – news about what is happening in political, economic, social, cultural, sport and other areas of life of participating countries to the international community. This channel could also deliver news about what is happening on the international scene to our citizens directly without being put through an ideological sieve of international news channels. It should be taken into account that CIS countries already have such a channel. I mean “МИР” (Mir) television channel, which covers all countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States. Another example is “Euronews”, one of the projects that Turkey is involved in. I believe that effective use of this experience will ease our work. I would like to note that this channel will respect internal affairs of countries. Particularly, it will cover - in an objective and constructive manner – what is happening in our neighboring countries, including the Russian Federation, Iran and other member countries of CIS, and also seek closer cooperation between countries of the region.”
“Although the establishment of an international television channel emerges as a necessity, we have to define in detail political, financial and administrative challenges of establishing such a channel, and elaborate – guided by the international experience – mechanism of its activity and working principles. We believe that if related television channels of member countries act as founders, that will be a purposeful step towards preventing attempts to coordinate the channel's activity with the position of member countries in the future,” said the Presidential Aide.
“At the same time, this mechanism may help build the image of an independent news channel and expand the scope of its activities. One of the main conditions is to observe the principle of an open joint stock company to protect equal share rights of the founders in the process of establishing the channel and to ensure the opportunity for new members and partners to be represented in its board of directors in the future.”
“The Republic of Azerbaijan has always contributed to the development of mutual relations and cooperation between Turkic speaking countries, and will further fully execute its partnership commitments. We think that the meeting of the Ministers of Information and Executives in Charge of Media of the Turkic Council should be held annually, information policy of Turkic speaking countries should be flexibly brought into conformity with the dictates of time and should be kept in constant spotlight. A good example of this is regular summits of press and information ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). By the way, as I mentioned OIC I must say that as representatives of Turkic speaking countries we can coordinate the activity in the format of press and information ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.”
“From this point of view I hail the work of the Astana forum. It is my hope that in the future other Turkic speaking countries will also join the projects that were born today, and I believe that they will play a vital role in the ensuring of unity in the Turkic world,” Mr Hasanov said.
“Once again I want to thank the host country Kazakhstan and personally Mr Asset Issekeshev for the wonderful organization and kind hospitality. I would like to note that if there is consent, the Republic of Azerbaijan is ready to host the next session of the Ministers of Information and Executives in Charge of Media of the Turkic Council,” he added.
Other speakers emphasized the significance of establishing a joint news channel and building close relations between national news agencies.
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The meeting then featured a ceremony to sign documents.
The Azerbaijani President`s Aide for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov, Kazakh Investment and Development Minister Asset Issekeshev, TRT Director General Senol Goka, Kyrgyz Minister of Culture, Information and Tourism Altynbek Maksudov and Secretary General of the Turkic Council Ramil Hasanov inked the Protocol on Cooperation in the field of Information and Media.
National television channels of the Turkic Council member states (ITV – Azerbaijan, KAZTRK and KHABAR – Kazakhstan, KTRK – Kyrgyzstan, TRT – Turkey) signed the Protocol of Cooperation. On behalf of Azerbaijan the document was inked by Director General of the Public Television and Radio Broadcasting Company Jamil Guliyev.
National news agencies of the Turkic Council member states (AZERTAC – Azerbaijan, KAZINFORM and KAZCONTENT - Kazakhstran, KABAR – Kyrgyzstan, Anadolu Agency – Turkey) signed the Memorandum of Understanding. AZERTAC Director General Aslan Aslanov signed the memorandum on behalf of Azerbaijan.
The participants of the gathering decided to hold the second Meeting of the Ministers in Charge of Information and Media of the Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States in Azerbaijan in 2016.
The meeting ended with a press conference by the heads of delegations. The Azerbaijani President`s Aide for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov said all issued discussed and documents signed during the meeting are backed by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. Commenting on the issue of the establishment of the joint television channel, Mr Hasanov said: “Some international transnational news organizations have a monopoly on news making industry and are pursuing their own interests. Heads and news organizations of the Turkic Council states believe that is it high time to develop their cooperation in the field of information.”
The Cooperation Council of Turkic Speaking States was founded in Nakhchivan in 2009.