By Meryem Goktas and
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned against the approach of using the nation’s symbol of independence Gazi Mustafa Kemal to meet certain ideological objectives and called for reclaiming the principles of the country’s War of Independence.
Speaking at the 79th commemoration ceremony to mark the demise of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk at the Bestepe Culture and Convention Center in capital Ankara Friday, Erdogan heaped praise on the founder of the modern Turkish republic and highlighted the role of his leadership during the tumultuous times of the 20th century.
"In the troubled period of the [20th]
“There is no doubt that Ataturk is one of these leaders," he said.
He warned against the approach of using Ataturk to meet ideological targets.
"The problem here is that there is a mentality, that wants to use our nation’s symbol of independence, Gazi Mustafa Kemal, for their own ideological objectives."
He said fascists and traitors, and their terror plots were being exposed in Turkey.
"Democratic-looking fascists have been revealed. The plot under the disguise of rights and law have also been revealed.
Call to reclaim principles
“The traitors, who infiltrated every institution of the state as well as every structure of the society, have been revealed; the target and the actors of the siege of terror trying to be formed throughout our borders were revealed.
"Now there are totally different possibilities and different horizons in front of Turkey that breaks all these games."
The president also called for the need to reclaim principles that had been declared at the beginning of the War of Independence.
“We need to reclaim the War of Independence National Pact principles,” he said.
The National Pact, also known as “Misak-I Milli”, is the set of six decisions made during the last term of the Ottoman Parliament in 1920.
The pact gave Turkey the right to govern a territory between Syria's Aleppo to Iraq's Kirkuk as Turkish soil.
"Leaving the economic and political dimension on one side, the most important reason for the security problems our country is facing
Erdogan said Turkey would be in another position today if these concessions had not been made.
"If we are being harassed at our borders which were set in our National
"With its 780,000 square
“Just as it was in our victories a century ago, our nation is moving towards its goals by integrating with its state.”
He said Turkey had to do everything for its national and security interests; he cited Operation Euphrates Shield in northern Syria and the ongoing Turkish military activities in western Syria’s Idlib as examples.
About the ongoing conflict across the Turkish border in Syria, the president said: “We cannot stay here as an audience [unable to do anything]. We have to do whatever is needed…
"Like all the important dates of our republic, Nov. 10 should be marked by not only commemorating Ataturk but by also trying to understand him.”
Earlier on social media, Erdogan commemorated “the great commander of our War of Independence, our first President Gazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk” through his official Twitter and Instagram accounts.
“We continue to work day and night in the direction of the target to increase Turkey, which is one of the most important legends left by Ataturk, above the level of contemporary civilization,” he said.