The Berlin-Istanbul festival started under the auspices of Mayor of Beyoglu Ahmet Misbah Demircan and the Mayor of Berlin Mitte District Christian Hanke. The festival organized by the Foundation for Intercultural Dialogue (FID).
The festival took place in Berlin's one of the most famous public square the Potsdamer Platz. Berlin-Istanbul festival aims to introduce the cultures of Turkey and Germany.
As well as Demircan and Hanke, Turkish Ambassador in Berlin Huseyin Avni Karslioglu, Turkish Consul General Mustafa Pulat, FID President Ercan Karakoyun attended the opening ceremony.
Karakoyun said at his speech that both Beyoglu and Mitte are multicultural and multifaith towns. He said that they wanted to build a bridge between cultures of Turkey and Germany and would like people to get to know each other.
Beyoglu Mayor Demircan said that Beyoglu and Mitte were sister municipalities now and said that they would have stronger relationships in the future. He said, "What makes cities attractive is being different from others. We are proud of the differences of our towns."
Folk dancers and whirling dervishes performed during the opening ceremony of the festival. Many Turkish and German citizens visited the opening of the festival.