ANKARA—In a campaign coordinated by Turkey’s deputy prime minister, official Ankara is pushing to organize “the million of people in its diaspora” in a campaign aimed at countering international recognition of the Armenian Genocide, reported the Hurriyet Daily News on Monday.
Reportedly, the plan is being penned by Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minster Bekir Bozdag. who run’s a government body called the Overseas Turks Agency, which was established in 2010.
“We are working on drafting a strategy document on the diaspora. It will respond to our priorities, objectives and working methods. We will also outline our messages through this document,” a senior government official told the Hurriyet Daily News over the weekend.
Hurriyet reports that in June, representatives of around 500 non-governmental organizations from mainly European countries and elsewhere will converge in Ankara for conference “on legal ways to confront racist and discriminatory attitudes toward Turks.”
“Our objective is to provide our citizens and NGOs information on ways to claim their rights in a conscious and organized manner,” the official told Hurriyet. “We advise them to remain within the boundaries of the law when they face racist attacks. We tell them to go to the police and make written applications so that these attacks can be addressed in a proper way using democratic means.”
“However, we need to do more than this. We are encouraging them to adopt dual citizenship and enjoy full-pledged rights,” Hurriyet quoted the official as saying.
Hurriyet also reported that some 2,000 Turks living abroad will be invited to a meeting in Istanbul which would mark the establishment of what the official called the “Turkish diaspora.”
The plan envisions the inclusion of groups representing what the paper called “other diasporas of like-minded countries.”
The plan envisions a strong alliance with Azerbaijanis living outside of Azerbaijan. To that end, a meeting is being planned to take place on September 15, the when Nuri Pasha, an Ottoman general representing Enver Pasha, one of the architects of the Armenian Genocide, commanded Turkish troops to Baku in 1918 to fight the Russians.