ATHENS – Four mayors including Athens’ Kostas Bakoyannis will attend a meeting with Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu on how cities can collaborate on protecting democray and the rule of law, on Wednesday.
Bakoyannis and the mayors of Florence, Hanover, and Paris along with the Eurocities European Network secretary general will speak at the event in Istanbul called “Cities: Democracy and Development”. Remarks will also be conveyed through online connections with the mayors of Budapest, Hamburg, Linz, and Utrecht.
Mayors are expressing their support for Imamoglu, who earlier in December was sentenced by a Turkish court to jail and stripped of his right to be a candidate and to vote. Imamoglu is free pending an appeals court decision, while the sentencing was condemned both domestically and abroad.
Athens’ Bakoyannis travelled to Istanbul again in early November, to boost collaboration between the two cities and to help preparations for the first Balkan Cities Network Summit, scheduled in Athens in January 2023.