Ugur Yilmaz: ‘When we look at events abroad, we appreciate the meaning of the Republic better’
Republic means much more than just a form of government
On 30 October, the Consul General of Turkey in Kazan, Ugur Yilmaz, held a reception on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey. Ankara celebrated the holiday the day before, October 29, the day when Mustafa Kemal Ataturk proclaimed the country a republic a hundred years ago.
Welcoming the guests, Ugur Yilmaz noted that he was proud that his country was celebrating this centenary this year:
“Celebrating the 100th anniversary of our Republic together with you in Kazan, the beautiful historical capital of the friendly people of Tatarstan, is a great honour and joy for me and my colleagues. I express my gratitude to all our guests for being with us today. For our sacred nation, the Republic means much more than just a form of government. When we look at the regional and global events taking place today outside our borders, we better understand and appreciate the meaning of the Republic's existence.”
With these feelings and thoughts, according to him, the Turkish people bow with gratitude and respect to the cherished memory of the founder of modern Turkey, Gazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and his associates.
“The values that the Republic of Turkey represents are based on principles that symbolise progress, development, peace, prosperity, tolerance, and justice. These values remain a source of hope and pride today as well as in the past. Over the past century, Turkey has made significant progress in many areas, including infrastructure, education, health, justice, and technology, and has become one of the economically developed countries. These achievements are the result of struggle and overcome difficulties in the face of great challenges. The 100th anniversary of the Republic of Turkey reflects this wonderful path of our sacred nation, underlines its commitment to the preservation and enhancement of the rich cultural heritage of our country, inspires the younger generation for the future, in which our path of development will continue, focused on the principles of democracy, unity, solidarity and prosperity," he stressed in his speech.
Ugur Yilmaz also noted that his country is ready to accept both opportunities and challenges of the future. Assessing the relations between Turkey and Russia, he pointed out that both states have long-standing historical ties, these are two neighbouring countries that maintain friendly relations: “The successes achieved by you, our citizens in this country, serve as a bridge between Turkey and the friendly Russian Federation and are of great importance for the further development and strengthening of relations between the two countries.”
According to him, Turkey seeks to support projects and events by expanding close cooperation with business circles and authorities of Russian regions such as Tatarstan, Bashkortostan, Chuvashia, Mari El, and Mordovia, as well as Samara Region, which are part of the consular district.
“In this regard, we believe that in the near future the number of humanitarian contacts and business visits will increase even more. With these thoughts, I congratulate our compatriots living in the Russian Federation on Republic Day. Besides, I cordially greet the Turkish community and the entire people of the Russian Federation, express my best wishes and my respect.”
“We are determined to glorify the ideal of a great and strong Turkey, regardless of external and internal ill-wishers”
Then he read out the address of Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, addressed to Turkish citizens and other peoples:
“Today we feel joy and pride in connection with the achievement of the 100th anniversary of our Republic. At this turning point in our glorious history, I remember with gratitude all the heroes who stood at the origins of the creation of our new state, especially the founder of our Republic — Gazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. I wish the mercy of Allah to our fallen heroes and veterans who have shed their blood on the land of our motherland for a thousand years.”
The Turkish leader expressed gratitude to all those who have served his homeland, people, and state for centuries. The Republic of Turkey, according to him, is the last state that was created on these lands. The path of its people from the past to the future ran from the Seljukids state to the Ottoman Empire and further to the Turkish Republic. The country has all the heritage of the 2,200-year-old state tradition, which finds its expression in the 16 stars on the presidential coat of arms.
“Inspired by deep history and ancient values, we strive to strengthen our Republic and prepare it for the new century. Our most important duty is to ensure the eternal existence of our Republic, which, in the words of Gazi Mustafa Kemal himself, originated as a 'defender of the defenseless'. Guided by this principle, over the past 22 years we have led our country from success to success, from victory to victory. Eliminating age-old shortcomings, we have taken steps to raise our Republic to the level of modern civilisation with the help of investments," Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in the telegram.
According to him, the Turkish people have implemented historical reforms in all areas — from democracy to the economy, from security to justice, from education to healthcare, from agriculture to foreign policy: “Thanks to the presidential system of government, even after almost a century, we have realised the ideal of Gazi Mustafa Kemal, formulated as: 'The goal and task of the national struggle is to ensure and preserve the full independence and unconditional sovereignty of the nation.” The head of the Turkish state also added that by removing the walls erected between the state and the nation, the unification of the people with the republic was ensured: “By our victorious struggle against the 'tutelary forces', we have reunited the Republic with democracy.”
“Now we are making every effort to make the second century of the Republic the centenary of our nation in the world under the slogan 'The Centenary of Turkey'. Thanks to the growth of the economy, the strengthening of democracy, the strengthening of reputation, the expansion of the sphere of influence, a principled and far-sighted foreign policy, we continue to act as a 'defender of the defenseless' around the world. We are pleased to see that every success of Turkey is followed with hope by all the oppressed peoples of our region and the whole world. We are determined to glorify the ideal of a great and strong Turkey, regardless of external and internal ill-wishers. Despite the terrorist organisations acting as mercenaries of the imperialists. Despite the invaders, who are still trying to settle scores a century ago. Despite incompetent ambitious people who are hampered by the achievements of our country. In short, despite the enemies of the people and our country, we, with God's help, will realise the 'Century of Turkey', as well as our other goals. May the Almighty help us!”
At the end of the address, Recep Tayyip Erdogan once again congratulated citizens living in Turkey and abroad on Republic Day.
“We value very much the fact that we have good-neighbourly, fraternal relations with the people of Turkey”
The chairman of the State Council of Tatarstan, Farid Mukhametshin, made a response speech from Tatarstan, who also quoted the words of congratulations of the rais of the republic, Rustam Minnikhanov, to the Turkish leader and the people of Turkey:
“Please accept the warmest congratulations of Tatarstan residents and mine personally. I sincerely wish you and the fraternal Turkish people a joyful mood, unforgettable impressions, good health and happiness, new worthy achievements for the glory of your native country. One hundred years ago, the solid foundations of the unity and independence of the Turkish state were laid, which to this day allow the people of the country to confidently and systematically solve the programme tasks of increasing economic power, social development, strengthening international authority and influence," he read the telegram.
“We value very much the fact that we have established close good-neighbourly, fraternal relations with the Turkish state and the people of Turkey in the last decade," said Farid Mukhametshin, congratulating the Republic of Turkey on his own behalf.
“The Century of Turkey”
Ugur Yilmaz is the new Consul General of Turkey in Kazan, took up his duties about a month ago. In an exclusive interview with Realnoe Vremya, the diplomat said that his main task is “to develop trade and economic cooperation with the regions belonging to our consular district, as well as to develop cooperation in various areas, for example, in the field of education and culture.” Soon after his arrival, he held several meetings with officials and businesses of the republic. Besides, the rais of Tatarstan, Rustam Minnikhanov, met with him, noting that Turkey is one of the leading foreign partners of Tatarstan, and the level of interaction of the Consulate General of Turkey with the state bodies of the republic is very high.
The holiday of the founding of the republic in Turkey was celebrated on a large scale, celebrations were held throughout the country. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan participated in the celebrations in Ankara and Istanbul. The Turkish leader visited the mausoleum of Ataturk, the exhibition of works of art about the anniversary of the republic, after which he addressed the nation with a special speech in which he stated that the new century would be the “century of Turkey”:
“Turkey today is a country that in the region and in the world provides assistance to everyone who needs it: from the Caucasus to Asia, from Turkestan to Palestine. Wherever there is an oppressed and needy person, Turkey will come to his aid," Erdogan said.
A naval parade with the participation of 100 ships and 20 combat aircraft was also held in the capital of the Turkish state on that day. Earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Erdogan with the centenary of the proclamation of the republic and stressed that bilateral relations develop in the spirit of friendship and good-neighborliness, and the country itself rightfully enjoys high prestige on the world stage. According to him, cooperation between Moscow and Ankara will only develop.
“I am confident that we will continue to consistently increase the entire range of bilateral ties for the benefit of our friendly peoples, in the interests of building a more just and democratic world order. I sincerely wish you good health and success, and happiness and prosperity to all your fellow citizens," the Russian leader stressed.
The rais of Tatarstan, Rustam Minnikhanov, also congratulated Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the 100th anniversary of the republic's formation: “Tatarstan acts as a strong link in strengthening Russian-Turkish relations. We are connected not only by the economy, we are historically close in culture and traditions.” He wished “prosperity to the fraternal people” in three languages: Russian, Tatar, and Turkish.