Türkiye Cumhuriyeti

Pekin Büyükelçiliği

Konuşma Metinleri

Address at Anzac Day commemorations held at the New Zealand Embassy, 25.04.2009

“Ambassador Browne, Susan, Colleagues, Defense Attaches, Ladies & gentlemen, Günaydın, Good morning, Tena Koutou,

We are gathered on this early spring morning far from our respective homes to remember our soldiers and commemorate the Gallipoli campaign of the First World War.

The Gallipoli campaign had gone down the annals of history as the war of valour, courage and chivalry.

It was a turning point in our evolution as nations. What happened in Gallipoli has been deeply etched in our collective memory.

This gathering, like many that will take place all around the world today epitomizes the wisdom of reconciliation and strength of compassion between, at one point, opposing sides.

At this point I would like to recall that the campaign itself was also marked by acts of decency. The 24th of May ceasefire allowed the sides to retrieve their wounded and bury the fallen.

As one of the great grandsons of a martyr Captain Ali Rıza from Hayrabolu, I am proud to read the compassionate words of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, who had sent it as a message to the Anzac mothers who came to the shores of Gallipoli in 1934.

“Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives, you are now lying in the soil of a friendly country, therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours. You, the mothers, who sent your sons from far away countries, wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.”

I thank you.”