Coordination meeting of the Turkish Israeli Civil Society Forum

The coordination workshop took place mid of April 2016 and was an event in an ongoing series of events related to the bilateral dialogue program called Turkish Israeli Civil Society Forum (TICSF), which is being organized and coordinated by the FNF offices in Jerusalem and Istanbul.

The coordination workshop served the purpose to convene the Israeli core group members of the TICSF and update them about new developments concerning the TICSF project as well as to analyze and evaluate new political developments regarding the Turkish-Israeli relations as well as the regional developments and their potential implication on the bilateral dialogue project. All participants agreed that there are currently many positive signs for a rapprochement of the two sides.Both sides show efforts to overcome the different hurdles and to downsize earlier demands. Also on the civil society level there is a rising interest and demand for encounter and cooperation. Especially,Turkey is making recently efforts to change public view against each Israel. Many journalists are approaching Israeli counter parts and look for cooperation. There is a clear change in public atmosphere and therefore legitimacy to deal with Israel in Civil Society. All members agree that it is the right time to move forwards with the bilateral project. Finally, core-group members discussed this year’s goals and concrete working steps for the forum members , among them activating the website, the group worked on last year, and which ought to function as a match maker for civil society groups from both sides; helping them to get connected and to cooperate on topics of joint interest; actively searching and connecting Israeli and Turkish civil society organizations; providing people from both sides with information about bilateral initiatives and events and to finally expose and present the cooperation project to the public.