Saturday, April 30, 2016
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Abant Platform to discuss Turkey's role in post-Arab Spring

The prestigious Abant Platform, which regularly sponsors roundtable and panel discussions on issues crucial to Turkey, is set to discuss the future of the Middle East and Turkey's role amid demonstrations and revolutions taking place in Arab countries.

The meeting will start today at the Çırağan Palace in İstanbul and continue in the southeastern city of Gaziantep over the weekend. Helene Flautre, co-chair of the EU-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee, and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu are expected to deliver keynote addresses at the opening of the meeting.

Many prominent scholars from various countries will join Turkish scholars in discussions at the meeting, including professors Radwan Ziadeh of Harvard University, Aurel Croissant of Heidelberg University, William Park of King's College London, Philipp Amour of Oxford University, İbrahim Ghanem of Zayed University, Pakinam Sharkawy of Cairo University and Ehud R. Toledano of Tel Aviv University.

The Abant Platform is an independent think tank that gets its name from Lake Abant in Bolu province, the location of its first meeting. Turkish intellectuals have been coming together each year since 1998 for Abant Platform meetings to discuss pressing issues the country is facing. The Abant Platform is one of the most well-known programs of the Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV).

The GYV was founded in 1994, and its mission and work were inspired by the GYV's honorary president, Fethullah Gülen. Gülen, known for his teachings of hizmet (service), tolerance and dialogue, has attracted a large number of supporters in Turkey and abroad.