A strong commitment to human rights values and an embrace of diversity will help Europe to better project its “soft power” across the world, Turkey’s President Abdullah Gül said today.
In his address to the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly, the President proclaimed diversity as an asset to Europe and warned against the rise of hostility and social exclusion faced by ethnic and religious minorities.
The president welcomed the formation of the Eminent Person’s Group which would deliver a report on ‘Living together in the 21st century’ at a ministerial summit next May in Istanbul.
“Separate can not be equal,” President Gül added. “We must develop a framework for living together. Prosperity demands some degree of migration for most European societies.
“Democracy and human rights can never be taken for granted. The role of the Council of Europe is as relevant today as it was 60 years ago.”