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Turkey celebrates National Sovereignty and Children’s Day

23 April 2012 /
Today Turkey celebrated National Sovereignty and Children’s Day with ceremonies being held all over the country.

Ceremonies were also held at foreign representative offices and in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC). Early in the day, high-level state officials led by Turkish Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek visited the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the modern Republic of Turkey.


Amerika’daki Türklerin Cumhuriyet’e hediyesi; Çocuk Esirgeme Kurumu


Çiçek was accompanied by Deputy Premier Bekir Bozdağ, National Defense Minister İsmet Yılmaz, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yıldız, Deputy Parliament Speaker Mehmet Sağlam, several other state ministers as well as officials from various political parties, deputies and parliamentary personnel. Çiçek laid a wreath at Atatürk’s mausoleum, observed a minute of silence, sang the Turkish national anthem and signed the visitor’s book.

Turkish President Abdullah Gül will receive the children of martyrs as well as veterans from the seven regions of Turkey at the Çankaya presidential palace in Ankara, while Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will greet children at his official residence.

National Education Minister Ömer Dinçer will attend ceremonies at 19 Mayıs Stadium in Ankara. The Turkish Air Force’s aerobatics team Turkish Stars is also schedule to put on a show in celebration of today.

Atatürk dedicated April 23 to the children of the country to emphasize that they were the future of the new nation. Since then, April 23rd has been recognized as National Sovereignty and Children’s Day in Turkey.

Every year on this date, children from all over the world are invited to Turkey to join in the festivities in the hope that such celebrations will contribute to a future of enhanced brotherhood and peace among different nations. The president, prime minister, Cabinet ministers and provincial governors all symbolically turn over their positions to children. Children also replace parliamentary deputies in Turkish Parliament and hold a special session to discuss matters concerning children’s issues.