By Bahattin Gonultas,Tuba Sahin
Turkey's president Wednesday has called on Muslim countries around the world to build efficient transportation networks in order to accelerate integration among themselves.
"Reinforcing our cooperation in the field of transport - one of the six areas covered under the COMCEC Strategy - is important for facilitating trade between our member countries and accelerating integration," said Recep Tayyip Erdogan in his opening statement at the 33rd meeting of the Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation (COMCEC) of the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Ankara.
"In today’s world, where global competition is intensifying, the cost and time advantage gained through efficient transport networks will make significant contributions to enhancing our competitive power, improving our trade, and strengthening our cultural ties," he added.
Erdogan said the Muslim world was witnessing developments that will shape the fate of its next century.
"As Muslims, we are struggling to simultaneously overcome many threats, trials and tribulations," he said.
Erdogan said terror organizations such as Daesh, al-Qaeda and the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) were shedding the blood of Muslims by hiding behind religious concepts.
"On the other hand, social maladies, such as Islamophobia, xenophobia and cultural racism are recurring in the West," he added.
Erdogan said that people in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Afghanistan and many other places had to live with death, cruelty and terror at every moment.
"It is our responsibility to say 'stop' to this harrowing and anguishing picture," the president said. "We cannot permit the greed, grudges and self interest of certain people to steal our future."