Mr. Egemen Bagis, Chairman of the Advisory Board of Platform for Global Challenges that has been founded by the Bilgi University, hosted Mr. Jose Manuel Barosso, President of the European Commission on the 11th April 2008 at Bilgi University's SantralIstanbul Campus. AK Party Vice Chairman Mr. Egemen Bagis, EU Enlargement Commission Member Mr. Olli Rehn and the rector of Bilgi University Mr. Aydin Ugur were present at the conference to which diverse invitees from media, politics and academy attended.
AK Party Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Advisory Board of Platform for Global Challenges Mr. Egemen Bagis said that AK Party is determined for Turkey's EU membership and as the party that started the negotiations with the EU; AK Party wants to be the one that ends this process. Mr. Bagis also stated that they are very happy to be hosting Mr. Barosso and that the latest events in Turkey made it clear who is supporting and who is opposing EU and democracy. Mr. Bagis also thanked Bilgi University and the Platform for Global Challenges for organizing the conference. Mr. Barosso told that EU is based on a political order which consists of democracy, peace and welfare and these values are the keys to the future and even the most powerful European countries can't cope themselves with the problems like climate change, international terror, threats to the security and energy security.
Mr. Barosso also noted that turkey is in the focal point of EU's enlargement process and he continued "Our will is Turkey's full membership. That should be realized by collective rights and responsibilities. Turkey and Europe has a common destiny. That will be in favor of us both." Mr. Barosso said Turkey's membership has great importance in economic relations, security and energy. Barosso also informed about the work done for the membership process and underlined that pre accession programs in Turkey are at a record level. Barosso said these are not abstract political ideas, they are solid realties. Barosso also said that accession negotiations period is not a technical process, and Mustafa Kemal Ataturk has already set the target, to reach the level of modern civilizations. This target is set for all Turkish citizens. And that means all the Turkish citizens should be able to have same freedom and democratic rights. Barosso answered questions of the students and academia after his speech.