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Tribes join together for trip

| November 6, 2010 9:00 PM

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Coeur d'Alene Tribe Chairman Chief Allan will join representatives from 17 Native American tribes who will travel to Istanbul, Turkey, for a weeklong business, educational and cultural exchange trip organized by the Turkish Coalition of America.

Participants on the first Native American Business Cooperation Trip will depart Washington, D.C., on Saturday aboard Turkish Airlines' inaugural flight between Washington and Istanbul, according to a press release.

Native Americans from 11 states will participate in the journey, including several from the Inland Northwest. The Coeur d'Alene, Assiniboine & Sioux, Crow, Salish & Kootenai tribes will be represented, as well as Tribes of Colville Reservation and the Yakama Nation, the release noted.

The delegation is scheduled to meet with Turkish Minister for Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoglu, Minister for Foreign Trade Zafer Caglayan and members of the Turkish Parliament's Turkey-USA Friendship Group.

The Native Americans will also meet with representatives of the Turkish Exporters' Council, participate in business symposiums and networking at three Turkish universities, and visit Gallipoli - the site of a World War I campaign that still resonates with Turks as a defining moment in their history, the release said.

"The Native American Business Cooperation Trip is the highlight of our recent efforts to foster increased economic and cultural ties between Turkey and Indian Country," said G. Lincoln McCurdy, president of TCA. "It is one of the largest Native American international delegations in recent years, and the first to visit Turkey. This trip marks the latest evolution in our work promoting the development of relationships between the Turkish peoples and the many ethnic and cultural groups in the United States."

TCA has already organized three meetings with Caglayan in 2010. Two meetings took place in the U.S., as Caglayan and Native American delegations laid the groundwork for the Business Cooperation Trip.

The delegation will return on Nov. 14.

Other participants on Turkish Airlines' inaugural flight will include members of Congress, journalists and think tank experts, the release said.

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