Prime Minister Erdogan at the Construction Site of Turkish American Cultural and Civilization Center, Maryland
The Ceremonial Recognition Event for the Turkish American Cultural and Civilization Center Project was held in honor of the Prime Minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on May 16, 2013. The ceremony was further accentuated by the Prime Minister who remarked on the center’s importance and stated that “this project would be an expression of love, based on the principles of tolerance and living peacefully together.” He laid the foundation for the center which is currently under construction.
Ambassador Namik Tan’s statements were in full accordance with those of the Prime Minister, as were those of Maryland’s Secretary of State, John McDonough. Ambassador Namik Tan asserted that the center would welcome all faiths and peoples and would be a much needed addition within the Turkish-American community. John McDonough described the Republic of Turkey’s relationship with the state of Maryland as being solid and called for a stronger US-Turkey partnership. He also alluded to the visit of the Mayor of Istanbul, Kadir Topbas, to his state last year.
The Vice-Secretary of the Religious Affairs Department, Mehmet Emin Ozavsar was also in attendance and preceded the other honorable officials in their remarks. His statements largely emphasized the center’s spiritual importance, affirming that it would “symbolize the depth of our peoples’ and civilization’s spirituality, level of aestheticism as well as its humanitarian and civil wealth.”
The event attracted community leaders and individuals of various cultures, faiths, and walks of life. Prime Minister Erdogan also mentioned that he would follow the progress of the center’s construction and that he looked forward to its completion in September 2014.