Cultural Diplomacy in Effective Succession
By H.E. Amb. Drazen Hrastic (Ambassador of the Republic of Croatia to Germany)
Cultural Diplomacy is a special part of the succession process of every country [to the EU]. It has not always been recognized, but it is extremely important that a new EU member state is recognized by other EU member states in all its specificities: culture, history, tradition, religion.
Cultural Diplomacy is extremely important in the Turkish case, and I would say even more important because in the EU area there is still not enough knowledge about Turkey. And of course, Turkey is European, Turkey is Mediterranean- Turkey is a middle-eastern country with an extremely rich history and culture, one of the richest in the world- and I think if it’s brought even more extensively to our EU friends, it can be even more beneficial for Turkey.
As far as cultural cooperation is concerned, there are a number of projects. Most famous Turkish writers have been translated into Croatian, and there are many other projects in areas of theater, filmmaking, cultural exchange, musical exchange, festival exchange, and this has brought our countries even closer. Turkish soap operas have become very popular in Croatia and this is one of the elements that is very important: simply to be exposed to various aspects of life of other people, other nations, other countries is extremely beneficial, and I think in this field that Cultural Diplomacy is extremely important. I personally believe that Cultural Diplomacy can prevent many difficulties between countries and nations if it is successfully used as a tool.
- The Ankara Conference on Peace-building & Reconciliation; Ankara, Turkey, April 2012