A project put forward by the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB) operating under the Prime Ministry of Turkey brought 40 Assyrian students from abroad to Turkey’s southeastern province of Mardin.
Mardin is home to the majority of Turkey’s Assyrians and hosts the main churches of the minority population.
YTB brought the children of Turkey’s Assyrians living in other countries who migrated from their homeland due to various reasons to Mardin in an effort to reconnect them with their heritage.
Aiming to familiarise the young population abroad aged 18-24 with their homeland through the Youth Bridges project, YTB President Kudret Bulbul noted that the presidency has been working to ensure that the ties between citizens abroad and Turkey are not broken.
He said, “They can’t visit Turkey so often. They forget about it. They don’t know too much about the progress Turkey has made. Their sense of belonging to Turkey is weakening. We have launched a program called ‘Youth Bridges’ to close the gap.”
In Mardin, the Assyrian youths and Bulbul met the governor and visited Artuklu University and then to the Mor Gabriel Monastery in the Midyat district.
Emphasizing that presidency does not want millions of people from Turkey living abroad to forget about Turkey, President Bulbul said that thanks to this project, 1500 young people came to Turkey from different parts of the world last year.
Bulbul also underlined Turkey’s democratization efforts and that the country has come a long way from the troubles of the past by implementing policies and embracing the diversity of the country’s population.