29 September 2011, Thursday / TODAY’S ZAMAN, İSTANBUL
The Research Center for Islamic History, Art and Culture (IRCICA) and the Arab League Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (ALECSO) have launched a cooperative project between Turkey and Arab countries to revise textbooks with regard to the history and culture of these countries and to correct wrong or biased information in them.
According to an IRCICA statement, in the first meeting of the “History Books Project,” which was held in İstanbul on April 18 and 19, it was decided to start by reviewing the school books of Turkey and the Arab countries, and after that is completed, the project will continue with the other countries that are members of IRCICA and ALECSO.
A second meeting was held Sept. 27-28 with the participation of Lebanese, Tunisian, Turkish, Jordanian and Yemeni specialists in history to discuss detecting and extracting incorrect statements, expressions, views and concepts that would misinform or mislead children about the Turkish and Arab peoples.
A short sweep of Khilafat
Another issue that was discussed during the meeting was that school books should include objective and unbiased surveys of and studies on the Turkish people and Ottoman history. This work is being carried out by Arab scholars, the number of whom is believed to have increased due to the influence of IRCICA’s international conferences and publications on the Ottoman period, which were held in Arab countries.
Importance of Khilafat
Finally it was decided to inform government authorities of the decisions made during the meetings and to announce the results to the public with detailed symposiums that will be carried out by Turkish and Arab specialists.
The decision to select Turkey and Arab countries for this project possibly sprang from the fact that relations between Turkey and Arab countries have recently improved. The project it is aimed at maintaining peace and positive relations between Turkey and the Arab world.