Visit of UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien to TIKA

United Nations (UN) Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien and accompanying delegations paid a courtesy visit to President of Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) Dr. Serdar Çam. 

UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien paid a courtesy visit to President of TIKA Dr. Serdar Çam. Deputy Chief of OCHA’s New York Office Daniel Pfister, Head of OCHA’s Office in Turkey Barbara Shenstone, Deputy Head of OCHA’s Office in Turkey Arzu Hatakoy, Deputy Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for Syrian Crisis Raul Rosende, Chief of the World Humanitarian Secretariat Jamilah Mahmood, Deputy Chief of the World Humanitarian Secretariat Merwat Shelbaya, Head Clerk of Ministry of Foreign Affair of Turkish Republic Gökçe Gül Yılmaz accompanied with UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien.


Head of Middle East and Africa Department of Keman Özdemir, Head of Department of International Relations Mehmet Yılmaz, TIKA Legal Advisor Mehmet Parlak, TIKA specialists Füsun Gür and Esin Acar Ergin and TIKA assistant specialist Burak Güner represented TIKA in the meeting. 
Expressing that Turkish programs were very busy, UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien recorded that they had important contacts in Turkey and they were in TIKA to make another important contact. UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien also expressed his gratitude for aid for Syrian and Iraqi refugees. 


TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam remarked that the real duty of TIKA was sustainable development assistance but crisis suddenly occurred in the world forced TIKA to make humanitarian assistance but we, as TIKA, were always ready for this duty as well. 


Expressing that they see people named as refugee/asylum seeker or illegal immigrant in international terminology as a “guest”, TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam said that they had given of their best for more than four years. Stating that they always started to work as soon as they received a humanitarian assistance offer, TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam gave the example of Lebanese tragedy happened in the last winter. 


Expressing that they, as TIKA, run wherever there is a crisis, TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam said: “As soon as we, as TIKA, heard children in Lebanon were frozen to death in winter, we delivered all kind of assistance materials protecting against winter conditions to related authorities. We showed we were not limited in just a few activities with our organizations in Iraq, Ukraine, Myanmar and Somalia. Briefly, we, as TIKA, run wherever there is any crisis.”


Expressing that Turkey locates in the center of crisis geography and tries to establish peace around; TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam stated that giving just a humanitarian assistance would not be a solution of the problems. Adding that crisis-preventive actions are as important as reflex in time and in the sequel of crises, TIKA President Dr. Serdar Çam gave the example of Somalia and said that Turkey started a big humanitarian assistance campaign for Somalia in 2011, Prime Minister at that time Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan went to Somalia in person and then Turkey supported Somalia with development assistance and changed the destiny of Somalia. 


UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien indicated that many donators today has not met criteria imposed by OECD-DAC, and could not fulfill what they promised in the meetings. Highlighting that there is a supplementary element between development assistance and humanitarian assistance, UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien expressed that the harmony between TIKA and AFAD should be held up as an example. Finally mentioning from the World Humanitarian Summit which will be held in Istanbul in May, 2016; UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien told that Turkey’s supports should be put forward in the summit and taken as an example in the world. UN Undersecretary General and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien completed his words saying that the summit will not be an arrival for humanitarian assistance, but a starting point. After speeches, the meeting adjourned.