Turkey uses sports to help Syrian refugee crisis

April 12, 2019 at 7:44 pm | Published in: Europe & Russia , Middle East , News , Syria , Turkey Syrian children walk in the mud after heavy rain fell at a refugee camp in Syria on 6 February 2016 [Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images] April 12, 2019 at 7:44 pm

More than 300 sports facilities are open to Turkish and Syrian citizens all year round, Turkey’s youth and sports minister said today, as reported on Anadolu Agency .

“Sports is one of the most important tools to extend brotherhood and peace and make this world a better place,” said Mehmet Muharrem Kasapoglu at a NATO meeting in Antalya.

More than 75,000 Turkish and Syrian teenagers across 19 provinces participated in sports and cultural activities between 2016 and 2018, he said, adding that they are aiming to reach 100,000 youths until 2020.

Kasapoglu noted 3.5 million Syrian refugees are currently living in Turkey and $33 billion have been spent on them.

“As a country, civilisation and culture, there is no concept of ‘the other’ in our people,” Kasapoglu added.