‘Linkages For Peace’ Seminar | FINAL REPORT
Release Date : 5/11/2018
‘Linkages For Peace’ Seminar | FINAL REPORT
The Final Report of ‘Linkages for Peace’ Seminar with the main theme "Connectivity-Road to Peace", which is held in Elite World Taksim Hotel on May 5th, 2018 in Istanbul and in cooperation with; Lahore Center for Peace Research (LCPR), South Asia Strategic Research Center (GASAM) and with the supports of Turkish Asian Center for Strategic Studies (TASAM), Pakistan Alumni & Members Association (PAMDER), Association of Assistance and Solidarity with Balkan Muslims (BESADER) and Pak-Turkish Friendship Association (PTF) is as follows:
 
Although being non-borderlands, Kosovo, Pakistan and Turkey are countries of a bright future with a common ground in culture and history. These three countries, which are located in a large geography straching from West (Kosovo) to South Asia (Pakistan) should act collectively by stepping up their mutual relations through public diplomacy. These countries should provide diplomatic, economic and political ground for integration and act jointly for peace.
 
The failure of the UN for the establishment of peace after World War II; is still partially manifested in instances such as the Cold War, the injustice of the current structure of the UNSC, and the partly existing bipolar world order. It is imperative to find a peaceful, stable and secure solution in this iniquitous period, where violence, corruption, and instability are storming through Asia and Africa. Thereby, economic and diplomatic cooperation is crucial for the way of solution.
 
In a period, where economic resources slide towards the East and the bipolar system evolves to multipolarity, the relations between these two geo-politically strategic countries should be intensified.  With these relations, global welfare should be achieved by developing regional trade. With the development of economic relations, civilization, peace and culture will concurrently be contributed.
 
Connectivity; allows people, goods, and information to travel easily between countries. It is a system that includes transport, communication, and cyber-relations and traces back to the historical Silk Road and the Spice Road. Connectivity is important for peace, and peace is crucial for development. Without peace, there can be no sustainable development and community development. Connectivity projects should be preferred because they are faster, cheaper and technological. Nowadays, cities form the basis of connectivity. Cities are the centers of the markets, and they have to be interconnected by regions, railroads, pipelines and so.
 
Connectivity consists of physical connectivity, digital connectivity and cultural connectivity as a whole. In this context, the six corridors of the “One Belt-One Road Initiative'' -one of which at sea and remainders on land-, could be exemplified for the physical connection. Digital connectivity has the power to gather people under a single social networking platform. At the same time, this power can take precedence over the hegemony by using technology. Cultural connectivity is the sub-title that connects civilizations.
 
The connectivity project of the Balkan Countries, including Kosovo and the One-Belt -One Road Initiative, launched by China are among the present examples of the Connectivity.
 
The connectivity project of the 6 Balkan countries, which are related to these, is shaped by 5 basic partnerships.

1.  Free Economic Zones in the Western Balkans were established on the basis of joint economic cooperation.

2.  Via common energy sector, joint energy use is planned in the 6 Balkan countries.

3.  With common telecommunications, citizens of these 6 countries in the Western Balkans will be able to use their phones without additional tariffs.

4.  In the common sub-structure, railway projects are located. These are Serbia-Kosovo and Kosovo-Hungary that to be connected.

5.  To use a single 'Western Balkanism' expression to attract foreign investments apart from these 6 countries through joint promotional activities. For this reason, these countries apply the same or very similar taxes to each other.
 
The second example is given over The Belt and Road Initiative is a very large project, actualized under China's infrastructure, covering 69 countries. With this project, people will be brought closer to each other. The project won it success to China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and China-Iran-Pakistan Economic Corridor. In this regard, China supplies the natural gas it needs from the Pakistan-Iran natural gas pipeline (Friendship Project). Furthermore, co-operation between China, Pakistan, Russia, Central Asian countries, the Gulf and Africa can also be achieved through CPEC.
 
According to Dr. Salman SHAH, the Former Finance Minister of Pakistan, our territory can go beyond connectivity, by being a supply chain region. The supply and demand system derived the concept of “the supply chain”. To ensure peace and prosperity, states must establish a maximum number of supply chains based on efficiency in the region. The roots of today's modern supply chains are based on trade routes and finances stretching back to the 15th century of Mongol, Safavid and Ottoman civilizations. With common manufacturing supply chain, agriculture, agricultural businesses, Pakistan, Turkey, and Kosovo can act together on many issues regarding natural resources and mines. Hence, global firms, NGOs, and transportation are needed. Attracting the zone for these institutions should be accompanied by factors such as improved human beings, law regulations, the creation of new institutions, and the enhancement and improvement of schools.
 
China floods its investment in Western China. However, the center of the world; Turkey, Pakistan, and Iran are deficient. This region is a much more economically affordable chain area due to its geopolitical importance. A chain to be built in this region that connects 75% of the world's population will be much more dominant. Building a connectivity involving Turkey, Africa, Pakistan, and China would be the most economical project.
 
Prof. Dr. Sedat AYBAR, the Advisor to Chairman of TASAM, has voiced that there are two different views that dominate the world. First of these, the oil companies that are losing validity, forming a great power, and shaping the world system. The second view is an idea that is better suited to explain the present day situation and developed by a group in the United States. Accordingly, the fossil-based energy sources are soon to be depleted and that the future will not be shaped by oil. By studying how to generate renewable energy, the determinism of oil companies should be avoided.
 
The continuation of carbon dioxide emissions will bring desertification along with the depletion of water resources and increasing poverty. This situation is far from being sustainable and needs to be changed. Unlike Donald TRUMP's economic nationalism-based projects, the second group's vision of revolutionizing technology will be successful. In this highly dynamic period, all our production systems and industries can change.
 
In this highly dynamic period, all our production systems and industries can change. We can observe this dynamism through the Brexit change and Britain’s Atlantic alliance with the United States, and the MACRON term in France. The western world is changing, and companies now use innovations to create new things. Despite the dramatic development of the Western capitalist world, sub-structures and innovations in our region are not enough. At this point, the Belt and Road Initiative does not seem ambitious enough while lacking the development of social relations. While social institutions are mushrooming in the Western world; The Belt and Road initiative is a Project that needs some integrations with imitated technologies that are agricultural, rural, traditional in nature, and the government intervention is high and being deprived of social relations, is disputable respecting to be defeated in the long run or not. Indeed, social relations attract innovation and innovative minds.
 
Dr. Omer Faruk KORKMAZ, Chief Advisor to the Prime Minister of Turkey, said that peace will be realized through social relations rather than the economy. For example, Turkey went to Somalia to ensure peace which was not motivated by economic gains but social relations. Peace should be reached by developing social and cultural relations with Pakistan and Kosovo. Bosnia and Albania should also be included in this project. In this period, where the conflicts of the states are greatly affecting each other's prosperity, peace must be viewed holistically.
 
Peace”, as a term, does not necessarily mean the opposite of the “war”. Peace should be defined as something relieving the minds of people. Peace is something free from fear and consists of freedom and basic rights. That is why connectivity is necessary to consolidate this freedom and rights in this sense. Every right deserves respect, must be protected, and it should create fruitful environments in which people can implement and exercise these rights.
 
In this period, where military spending is three times bigger than sustainable development spending, conflicts lead to huge economic losses and prevent spending for peace. Conflict and economic problems can only be achieved through “Inclusive Development”. A political and economic mechanism based on equality that can achieve this can only be achieved on the basis of rights. A political and economic mechanism based on equality that can realize this can possibly be achieved on the basis of rights.
 
Another strategically important region where Turkey's social relations that have been maintained in political and economic fields throughout the history is Balkans. According to Dr. Mawludin IBISH, Turkish people had internalized such problems occurred in Balkans which had shaped state policies. The problems in the Balkans have been described as an internal problem in the international community and ethnic cleansing, the killing of thousands of people have not been prevented. In a conjuncture where countries think of their national interests during the independence of Kosovo, Turkey has been one of the first states to recognize Kosovo, despite the threat of Kurdish separatism and besides, has given all diplomatic and economic support for the Bosnian war. The solution of the problems that are still present in the Balkans depend on the development of education, politics, and economics in order to provide prosperity and stability.
 
In a globalizing world where countries cannot live in isolation, it is observed that the 21st century will be shaped around and on Asia. The peace and success of peace in Asia depends on forgetting the sufferings of nations and embracing each other. A common consensus on the conflicts should be established in this period when the inadequacy of the UN is obvious. In this context, conflict zones that have been in dire need of this consensus for many years and which maintain their urgency, are Palestine, Kashmir, Syria, Afghanistan, and Yemen.
 
Connectivity should be extended to areas of policy coordination, infrastructure networks, mental coordination, easy flow of capital and safe and secure circulation of people. Economic development is not possible without reliance on national and regional conflicts. Peace and development are two intertwined elements that support each other. Finally, Asia should remember its history and produce its own resources in the meaning of providing awareness in self-sufficiency.
 
Istanbul, 05 May 2018
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