Türkiye Cumhuriyeti

Sidney Başkonsolosluğu

Konuşma Metinleri

29 Ekim Cumhuriyet Bayramı Resepsiyonu Konuşma metni, 29.10.2012

Speech delivered by
Gülseren Çelik
Consul General of the Republic of Turkey
on the occasion of the
89th Anniversary of the Republic of Turkey
Sydney, 29 October 2012

Sayın Beyefendiler, Hanımefendiler,

Değerli vatandaşlarim ve soydaşlarım,

Cumhuriyetimizin kuruluşunun 89. Yıldönümü münasebetiyle düzenlediğimiz törene hoşgeldiniz. Tarihimiz açısından bu çok önemli günde sizleri burada görmekten büyük mutluluk duyduğumu ifade etmek isterim.

Şimdi müsaadenizle konuşmama İngilizce olarak devam edeceğim,

Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen, I wish to welcome each and every one of you.

Allow me to also acknowledge
The Honorable Tony Issa representing the Premier of NSW the Honorable Barry O’Farrel and the Honorable Victor Dominello, Minister for Citizenship and Communities,

The Honorable Barbara Perry, representing the Opposition leader, the Honorable John Robertson,

My Colleages from the Consular Corps,

On this very special occasion, I see many friendly faces. Many MPs from both the houses of the NSW Parliament, businessmen, academics, leading figures of Sydney art society, and distinguished members of the Australian-Turkish community.

It is truly a great pleasure to have our National Day here in the Opera House, one of the most beautiful and iconic architectures of the World and I am truly humbled by the very high level of attendance.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

On this very special evening, we are gathered here to celebrate the 89th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey.

Turkey today is very different to what it was nearly 9 decades ago.

Today, Turkey stands proud to be a secular democracy, based upon the rule of law. An active member of the Euro-Atlantic community pursuing full membership in the European Union and a market economy. Turkey’s economy is the 16th largest in the world, 6th in Europe with a GDP of more than 1 trillion in US Dollars supported by a thriving private sector and a dynamic population of over 75 million.

These remarkable achievements of Turkey in the last 89 years has been due to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk founder of the Republic of Turkey and its first President.

Regarded as one of the great leaders of history, few have achieved so much in so short a period, transformed the life of a nation as decisively, and given such profound inspiration to the world at large.

He emerged as a military hero at the Dardanelles in 1915 and led the Turkish national liberation struggle in 1919. As a triumphant commander who crushed the invaders of Turkey following a series of impressive victories against all odds, he led the Turkish nation to full independence. From the remnants of a crumbling Ottoman Empire, he created the Republic of Turkey in 1923, establishing a new government truly representative of the nation's will.

As President for 15 years, until his death in 1938, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk introduced a broad range of swift and sweeping reforms - in the political, social, legal, economic, and cultural spheres - virtually unparalleled in any other country.

His vision has revamped the entire fabric of the Turkish nation transforming the country into a modern and progressive one.

In particular, and ahead of many countries, Turkish women obtained equal status in society by receiving many rights through a range of statutory changes. Encouraging women to participate in every sphere of life he paved the way for Turkish nation to florish.

The achievements of Turkey are an enduring monument to Atatürk. Emerging nations admire him as a pioneer of national liberation. The world honors his memory as a foremost peacemaker who upheld the principles of humanism and the vision of a united humanity.

What has been achieved so far are merely the first steps of what will be accomplished in time to come.

Today, the Republic of Turkey, with its democratic and secular political system and free market economy is seen as a role model to its neighboring region and beyond. A generator of peace, stability and wealth set by Ataturk’s great statesmanship and vision.

Distinguished Guests,

Throughout my career, I, fortunately, served in friendly countries such as Egypt, Norway, France and Ireland. Today, I have the privilege to serve in another friendly country, Australia.

Our countries enjoy a very special and unique relationship born from the battlegrounds of Gallipoli, Turkey. Undoubtedly, Gallipoli is the birthplace of the ANZAC spirit.

And I can feel this unique nature of the relationship between our two countries in all my engagements with the local and national authorities.

Now we have the responsibility of taking this special bond between Turkey and Australia further. The centenary of Gallipoli in 2015 will provide us an unprecedented opportunity to intensify and diversify our relationship. And I am delighted to share with you that both sides have the will, desire and resolution to deepen the cooperation and collaborative efforts between the two countries.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s recent visit to Turkey on the occasion of this year’s ANZAC ceremonies is a telling example of this understanding. During this visit, a Joint Declaration was issued, which heralded the proclamation of 2015 as the “Year of Turkey in Australia” and the “Year of Australia in Turkey”. We have already started working on many projects for 2015.

We are also happy to observe that people in both countries are enthusiastic to mark this very special centenary and are coming up with unique projects.

Dear Guests,

Coming first time in 1968 around 150.000 Australians of Turkish origin have made Australia their home. 55.000 of them are in our jurisdiction. A well integrated community they have benefitted from the riches that their new home has offered and become a valuable asset of it. Now they form a human bridge between Turkey and Australia. Tonight we have among us leading representatives of them from all walks of life. We have doctors, lawyers, engineers, artists, politicians, academics, businessmen and more.

Before concluding my speech, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to our host Guillaume at Bennelong Restaurant and especially to Mr. Guillaume Brahimi for their kind hospitality.

I also wish to thank my dedicated staff for their efforts in organizing this reception, and our Master of Ceremony Mrs. Aycan Aktepe, a respected senior professional, who has kindly accepted our request to master this very special ceremony who has done a wonderful job.

And lastly, I want to bid farewell to my colleague, Ms. Pirkko Kaikkonen, Consul of Finland, who is going to leave Sydney tomorrow, upon the completion of her term of duty. I wish her safe trip back to Helsinki and all the best for the future.

I renew my heartfelt wishes for the continuation of the strong friendship between Turkey and Australia, and for the well-being and prosperity of the friendly Australian people.

Please enjoy the magnificent view.
Thank You.