Turkey, which took over the rotating G20 presidency from Australia on Dec. 1, 2014, will host the G20 summit in the Mediterranean city of Antalya on Nov. 15-16. According to diplomatic sources obtained by Today’s Zaman, it is being planned that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and acting Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu will sit together with the world leaders at a luncheon on the first day of the gathering. The main topic at the luncheon will be the Syrian refugee crisis that has occurred as a result of the civil war in Syria and the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in the country.
Turkey is currently hosting about 2.2 million refugees, most of whom are Syrian. Hundreds of thousands are housed in refugee camps, but many more have been left to fend for themselves, leading some people to try their luck on the arduous journey to Europe, which has seen some 600,000 new arrivals this year. According to official figures, the cost of refugees to Turkey since the start of the Syrian conflict in 2011 is somewhere between $7.5 to $8 billion.
Turkey was represented at the prime ministerial level at previous G20 summits. Interim Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, as the head of government, represented Turkey at the G20 summit last year in Brisbane.