The Turkish Minister for Youth and Sports Akif Cagatay Kilic said on Tuesday that young people across the world should take part in decision making processes, emphasising the need to tackle radicalism and terrorism among the global youth.
Kilic was speaking at the first Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) Young Leaders Summit which kicked off in Istanbul - a two day event organised by the Islamic Conference Youth Forum for Dialogue and Cooperation (ICYF-DC), which is an affiliate of the OIC.
The minister addressed international audiences from different OIC members states on how to enhance active youth involvement and participation while ensuring youth development around the world.
Kilic said, "Young people should take a part in the global decision making process."
He also said it is "unacceptable" to associate Islam with "terrorism," adding that the global image of Islam has been hijacked by terrorists who misinterpret the religion for their own interest and false ideology.
The minister said that Islam is a peaceful religion for all of humanity. He urged Muslim youths to strive harder to tackle islamophobia and denounce terrorism.
The Malaysian Minister of Youth and Sports Khairy Jamaluddin also said "Youth is not just a future but the present" and has the opportunity to positively change the world by avoiding terrorist groups such as DAESH.
Ambassador Elshad Iskandarov, the head of ICYF-DC, also proposed the creation of the Youth Waqf to support OIC Youth Development on the panel titled "Role of Governments in Ensuring Youth Development."
During the panel, Azad Rahimov, Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan, demonstrated a promo video ahead of the 4th Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku in 2017.
Other dignitaries who contributed to the panel were Alieu K. Jammeh, the Gambian Minister of Youth and Sports; Mrs. Mehla Ahmed Talebna, Director General of the Cultural, Social and Family Affairs of the OIC, and Faisal Abdulaziz Al-Nassar Deputy - head of Youth Welfare - from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.