Turkey to host UN tourism meeting next year

ANKARA -Turkey will host a joint annual meeting of the UN's culture and tourism agencies in 2018, the Turkish culture and tourism minister said Tuesday.

Numan Kurtulmus, told state-run broadcaster TRT in Oman's capital Muscat that next year's meeting for the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) may be held in Istanbul -- though they were still considering other cities as possible choices for the venue.

He said Turkey, as host for the meeting next year, will have the "golden opportunity" to introduce its tourism and diverse culture to the world.

Kurtulmus was attending this year's annual meeting of the UN agencies in Muscat from Dec. 11-12.

During the meeting a wide range of topics, including governance models, tourism and the protection of cultural heritage, were discussed.

Also, the issue of Jerusalem came up during a discussion on the protection of cities.

"The protection of the identity of Muslims in Jerusalem was raised at an international forum," he said, adding that it was Turkey's responsibility to raise the issue globally.

Amid worldwide condemnation, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and relocate Washington's embassy from Tel Aviv to the holy city.

Jerusalem remains at the core of the Israel-Palestine conflict, with Palestinians hoping that East Jerusalem -- now occupied by Israel -- might eventually serve as the capital of a future state.

Source: Anadolu Agency