Alliances for Culture Tourism in Eastern Anatolia launched
Alliances for Culture Tourism in Eastern Anatolia UN Joint Program was launched in Ankara on 18 November 2008. This program will be funded by the Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund (MDG-F) entrusted to United Nations by the Government of Spain and will be managed by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in cooperation with United Nations organizatons (UNDP, UNESCO, UNICEF, UNWTO). The Joint Program aims to promote culture tourism in Kars and the region of Eastern Anatolia.
Starting with the speech of Naif Alibeyoğlu, the Mayor of Kars, the event included speeches from Mehmet Ufuk Erden, the Governor of Kars, Mahmood Ayub, UN Resident Coordinator, Manuel Larrotcha, Deputy Chief of Mission of Embassy of Spain in Turkey, and İsmet Yılmaz, Undersecretary of Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism.
“This project is of great significance for Kars” stated Naif Alibeyoğlu, the Mayor of Kars. Mentioning that Kars was selected among 15 brand cities by the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism in its 2023 strategy, Mehmet Ufuk Erden, the Governor of Kars, pointed out that he was glad and excited that Kars was in this project. Mahmood Ayub in his speech accentuated the link between sustainable development and cultural and social diversity saying that culture could facilitate development through tourism. In addition to explicating Millenium Development Goals, Ayub added that this project would contribute to supporting pro-poor sectors in Kars. Manuel Larrotcha indicated that this project utilized an innovative approach in the sense that cultural heritage would contribute to poverty reduction. “This project can be a model.” Larrotcha said. Opening remarks came to an end by İsmet Yılmaz, Undersecretary of the Turkish Ministry of Tourism and Culture, who specified the 4 goals of the project: preparing the cultural heritage inventory of Kars, managing site areas, increasing awareness of Kars citizens on culture tourism and promoting culture tourism in Kars to the world. Yılmaz also thanked the Government of Spain and the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Toursim for their prominent support to the project.
After the opening remarks, officials from United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) made brief presentations about how each of them would contribute to Alliances for Culture Tourism in Eastern Anatolia UN Joint Program. UNDP programme associate Berna Beyazıt stated that UNDP would support clustering analyses and system of business development among other aspects of the project (for full speech please click here). “UNESCO contributes through capacity building and as a standard-setter and a clearing house.” said UNESCO official (for full speech please click here). As explained by Nilgün Çavuşoğlu, UNICEF official, tolerance, harmony and friendship among children, and common understanding among children on cultural diversity are the areas in which UNICEF will share its experience. She added that UNICEF would try to bring children’s perspective to the Project with children (for full speech please click here). UNWTO will add to the project by providing realistic assessment analysis, determining enterprise needs and strengthening visitors’ flow (for full speech please click here).
Following the presentations of UN agencies, working groups convened so as to share ideas on advantages and opportunities that the city of Kars has in culture tourism.
Alliances for Culture Tourism in Eastern Anatolia UN Joint Program, funded by the Government of Spain, will be managed by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in cooperation with United Nations organizatons (UNDP, UNESCO, UNICEF, UNWTO). The program, which aims to promote culture tourism in Kars and the region of Eastern Anatolia, is worth of 3.8 million US dollars and will be completed in December 2010.
Previously ruled by Sasanians, Romans, Byzantines and Ottomans among others, the city of Kars reflects many civilizations. As one of the culturally rich Eastern Anatolian cities, Kars is home to the Molokans as well, a community that was exiled from Russia in 1877. At the launch of Alliances for Culture Tourism in Eastern Anatolia UN Joint Program, an exhibition by Vedat Akçayöz presented photos from daily lives of Molokans.
Source : MDG news Turkey