Turkey is commemorating Great Leader Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the Founder of Republic of Turkey, who passed away 74 years ago.
Commemoration ceremonies are taking place throughout Turkey, in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and foreign representations on Saturday.
Turkish President Abdullah Gul, Parliament Speaker Cemil Cicek, Chief of General Staff Gen. Necdet Ozel and the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) chairman Kemal Kilicdaroglu as well as the state dignitaries laid a wreath at Ataturk’s Mausoleum–Anitkabir.
They observed a minute of silence in Ataturk’s respect at 9:05 a.m., when Ataturk passed away 74 years ago.
Sirens were rang throughout the country, flags were hoisted at half-mast to commemorate the Great Leader.
President Gul signed the special book of Anitkabir and wrote that Turkey has been improving by getting strength from ideals and opinions of Great Leader Ataturk. “Turkey has been advancing on its way with resolute steps toward a bright future,” he wrote.
Born in 1881 in Thessaloniki, Ataturk was a Turkish army officer, revolutionary statesman, and Founder of Republic of Turkey as well as its First President.
Ataturk became known as an extremely capable military officer during World War I. Following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire, he led the Turkish national movement in the Turkish War of Independence. Having established a provisional government in Ankara, he defeated the forces sent by the Allies. His successful military campaigns led to the liberation of the country and to the establishment of Turkey.
During his presidency, Ataturk embarked upon a program of political, economic, and cultural reforms. An admirer of the Age of Enlightenment, he sought to transform the former Ottoman Empire into a modern, democratic, and secular nation-state. The principles of Ataturk’s reforms, upon which modern Turkey was established, are referred to as Kemalism.
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk died at 9:05 a.m. on November 10, 1938 at the age of 57. On November 10, daily life and traffic stops at 9:05 a.m. for two minutes as sirens wailing and people observing two minutes of silence out of respect to Ataturk.