The 12th General Assembly Meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly of Turkish States (TÜRKPA) was held in Ankara on April 28, 2023, hosted by the Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye Mustafa Şentop. With the meeting, Türkiye took over the TÜRKPA Presidency. In the TURKPA General Assembly, the emphasis was placed on cooperation and strengthening between the Turkish states. At the end of the meeting, the Ankara Declaration was signed. With the decision taken unanimously in the General Assembly and the TURKPA Council, the TRNC became an observer member of TURKPA.
12 international institutions participated in the 12th General Assembly Meeting of TURKPA, in which 104 parliamentary representatives took part. In this context, the General Assembly was attended by the President of the Azerbaijan National Assembly Sahibe Gafarova, the Speaker of the Kyrgyzstan Parliament Nurlanbek Şakiyev, the Speaker of the Turkmenistan Parliament Dünyagözel Gulmanova, the Speaker of the Kazakhstan Parliament Yerlan Koşanov, the First Deputy Speaker of the Hungarian National Assembly Sandor Lezsak, the Speaker of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Parliament Zorlu Töre, TURKPA Secretary General Mehmet Süreyya Er, Turkic States Organization (TDT) Secretary General Kubanychbek Omuraliyev, International Turkic Culture Organization (TÜRKSOY) Secretary General Sultan Raev and Union of Turkish World Municipalities (TDBB) Secretary General Fahri Solak and Turkic Academy President Shahin Mustafayev as well as other guests that joined.
Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey Mustafa Şentop, in his speech at the General Assembly, stated that it is more difficult to successfully manage than establishing an international organization and said that TÜRKPA has developed, strengthened and made progress since its establishment. TÜRKPA overcame the difficulties and proved to be successful. Şentop stated that international organizations are a reflection of the will and power of the states that founded and supported them.
Expressing that the successes of Turkish states and cooperation organizations will follow each other, Şentop said: “As our cooperation organizations get stronger, we will feel stronger. Just as a bird cannot fly with one wing, all Turkish states should be integrated within the TÜRKPA for the full realization of the cooperation potential between independent Turkish states. This means that all independent Turkish states should have a permanent status in TURKPA”.
Expressing that it is very important to develop, diversify, institutionalize, consolidate and make institutions effective in the world among Turkish states, Şentop emphasized that developments in the region necessitate strengthening relations and integration within cooperation organizations.
TDBB Secretary General Fahri Solak gave a speech at the General Assembly. In his speech, Solak said, “We wished the 12th General Assembly of TURKPA to be beneficial, I congratulate its 15th Anniversary. TDBB is one of the partner communities of TURKPA. I would like to thank the TÜRKPA Administration and the General Secretariat for inviting all institutions related to the Turkic world to this General Assembly. I would like to express that we are ready to cooperate with other institutions as well as the institutions with which we have signed cooperation protocols and carried out joint projects in the next period. TDBB is an international organization that was established in 2003 by the decision of the Council of Ministers, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. TDBB currently carries out many activities aimed at developing cooperation in local services, city diplomacy, municipality and other fields between 1205 member municipalities from 30 different countries and friendly and brotherly countries, especially the Turkic Republics. Among these 30 countries, all of the Turkic Republics are actively involved, with one deficiency. I would like to take advantage of the presence of the Speaker of the Turkmenistan Parliament among us and express that we are willing to make up for this deficiency with the inclusion of Turkmenistan local administrations in TDBB and that we are ready to cooperate with Turkmenistan local administrations for joint projects.”
In the continuation of his speech, Solak said, that TDBB carries out many activities such as Information experience sharing programs, themed expert trainings, internship programs, education and youth activities, sister city studies, social and cultural events, prestige publications, city diplomacy, study visits between member countries, equipment and vehicle support to member municipalities, green field Works and restorations of historical monuments. I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude and respect to all our participants and member countries for their close cooperation. I wish the general assembly to be beneficial”.
At the end of the meeting, in which the chairman and vice-chairmen of the TURKPA commissions were elected, the commission reports, recommendations and the budget were accepted, the Ankara Declaration of the 12th General Assembly of TURKPA was signed.
At the meeting, it was decided to hold the 13th General Assembly of TURKPA in 2024 in Azerbaijan.