The Turkish Republic began its 50th Anniversary celebrations on Monday (October 29th) with a simple sombre ceremony in honour of its founder, Kemal Ataturk.
GV Parade in street, Government officials march (2 shots)
SV President marches in parade
LV Parade turns corner
SV INTERIOR President stands before Tomb
GV President leaves tomb with officials
SCU President signs book
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Background: The Turkish Republic began its 50th Anniversary celebrations on Monday (October 29th) with a simple sombre ceremony in honour of its founder, Kemal Ataturk.
The Turkish President, 70-year-old Fahri Koruturk, marched in a solemn procession through the streets of Ankara to the imposing Ataturk mausoleum. Flanked by leaders of Turkey's eight political parties, President Koruturk laid a wreath in honour of Ataturk "..the Father of the Turks..." who died in 1938. Later, in a message written in the Book of Condolence, the President referred to the country's debt to Ataturk, who built modern Turkey from the debris of World War I.
The message read "You created a strong Turkey in which the World had confidence after the collapse of the Ottoman empire."
The anniversary has an added significance, because it follows this year's elections and the return to full democracy after two-and-a-half years of military rule. The anniversary also coincides with the opening of the Bosphorus bridge, which symbolises Kemal Ataturk's aim of closer links with Europe.