The doors to Anatolian wisdom will open to Nigerians, Turkey's first lady Emine Erdoğan said Wednesday regarding the opening of Turkey's Yunus Emre Institute (YEE) Cultural Center in the Nigerian capital Abuja.
The first lady attended the center's inauguration ceremony in Abuja, where she also presented her book, "My Travels to Africa."
In her speech, the first lady said she was happy to be back in Nigeria after five years. "With this center, we will be opening the doors of Anatolian wisdom to our Nigerian brothers. You will have the opportunity to get to know Turkish culture more closely, and you will also be able to learn the Turkish language if you wish," she said.
Noting that a total of 62 Yunus Emre Cultural Centers have been established in 52 countries, she said literature, culture and art are "the most beautiful tools" that strengthen ties between countries.
"We consider Africa as the rising star of the 21st century. We stand in solidarity with the entire African continent so that it reaches the place it deserves," she said, pointing out that the increase in the number of Turkish embassies in Africa is a sign of deepening relations.
Underlining that Turkey's ties with Africa are not only based on donations or grants, she said the continent's development is important. "We will continue to contribute to peace, stability, prosperity, and development of the continent, as we have done so far. I wish the success and happiness of the African geography forever," she said.
The book, which is dedicated to her mother, covers the first lady's visits from 2014-2020 to 23 African countries, including Algeria, Ethiopia, Somalia, Tanzania, Mozambique and Senegal.
Şeref Ateş, head of the YEE, said he is pleased to open a new center that serves as Turkey's cultural ambassador in all corners of the world.
"As the institute, our aim is to establish a realistic perception of Turkey ... and to increase Turkey's recognition, awareness and prestige," he added.