Istanbul will host the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Young Leaders Summit today and tomorrow as young and influential people from OIC member countries will convene for the "Unity in Action for Development, Peace and Justice" themed event. The summit is the first of its kind for the OIC, which gathers together 57 countries from the Muslim world and is organized by the Istanbul-based Islamic Conference Youth Forum for Dialogue and Cooperation (ICYF-DC). The summit's declaration will be presented at the OIC summit of heads of state and government, which will convene in Istanbul on April 13-14. The Young Leaders summit will be opened by ICYF-DC President Elshad Iskandarov, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Yemeni activist Tawakkol Karman and OIC Secretary-General Iyad Madani.
The summit aims to build bridges between Muslim youth from different countries and the youth and sports ministries of member states will coordinate the events at the summit, which will focus on developing strategic policies to address the youth's problems.
An awards ceremony will also be held as part of the summit for "Ten Young Muslims Who Can Change the World." The first panel of the summit, titled "Role of Governments in Ensuring Youth Development," will discuss how the youth can participate in policies to shape their future. OIC member states are populated by nearly 1.5 billion Muslims in total and one-third of this population is constituted by youth.