Turkey will mark the 90th anniversary of its Victory Day holiday in the absence of President Abdullah Gül, who had to cancel a reception due to the ongoing treatment of an ear infection.
In a message he issued yesterday, Gül focused on the concept of national unity in diversity in the wake of terrorist attacks that caused sorrow across the entire country. “Those who attempt to break our unity and togetherness will be disappointed, as has been the case for ages,” Gül said in the message.
The motivation behind Turkey’s success in keeping its unity even against world powers in the 1920s was the nation’s faith and belief in its freedom, Gül said, adding that the Turkish people have become the best example of a culture of tolerance, respect and living together in peace.
In the absence of Gül, Parliamentary SpeakerCemil Çiçek will lead the ceremonies at Anıtkabir and the Atatürk Cultural Center on Aug. 30.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the Republican People’s
Party (CHP) said that although there would always be powers that would like to weaken and divide Turkey, “We are determined to fight against these powers just like we did 90 years ago.” “We will all together fight against terror, which seeks to divide us,” he added.
Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli said the Turkish state will never be divided or disintegrated in his message.
The host of the Victory Day reception has been changed from the military to the presidency last year, Bahçeli said, adding that this kind of symbolic change would not lead to civilianization. “The moral reputation of Victory Day has been given to the military by our people,” Bahçeli said, adding that breaking this tradition would not bring about more democracy, freedom or civilianization.
Also on Aug. 29, Çiçek and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan attended a graduation ceremony at the Gülhane Military Medical Academy (GATA). In related news, the Supreme Court of Appeals announced the cancellation of a reception marking the beginning of the judicial year because of the recent terror attacks.