Ambassador Selçuk Ünal's National Day Message
Honourable Minister Ahmed Hussem, Minister of Immigration,
Honourable Perry Trimper, Speaker of the Newfoundland and Labrador House of Assembly,
Senator and Members of Parliament,
Ambassadors and High Commissioners,
Distinguished members of the Turkish-Canadian Community,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would like to thank Minister Hussem for honouring us today. Likewise, I would like to thank the Speaker of the Newfoundland Assembly for honouring us again. He represents the historic link between Turkey and Canada going back to Gallipoli/Çanakkale Campaign.
Today marks the 94th anniversary of the proclamation of the Republic of Turkey under the leadership of Gazi Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. On the occasion of our National Day, I extend my congratulations and best wishes to our fellow citizens in Canada. More than 60.000 Turkish-Canadians are celebrating our National Day across Canada from coast to coast. Flag raising ceremonies are being organized by our community in cooperation with provincial governments from Vancouver to Saint-Johns.
This year we all have the pride to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Canada. I hereby wish all Canadians a very happy Canada-150. Turkey participated actively in those celebrations across Canada. Herein Ottawa, we participated Canada-150 with International Children’s Festival on 23 April and Tulip Festival – since Turkey is the motherland of tulip.
Proclamation of the Republic constitutes a historic cornerstone in the journey of the Turkish nation and the birth of a modern, democratic, pluralistic and secular Turkey. We commemorate with gratitude to Gazi Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of modern Turkey and commander of the War of Liberation, and his comrades-in-arms. Today signifies the reborn of a nation from its ashes that prefer to die instead of losing its independence. The ones who think they would succeed at the time, were frustrated with the determination of the Turkish nation and “they went back as they came”. This spirit is still alive today.
That is why, the Turkish nation stood altogether against a foiled coup attempt staged by the Fethullahist Terror Organisation to topple the elected Parliament last year. On July 15th, 2016, Turks from every walk of life protected their democracy. Today is another important occasion where we also commemorate all our martyrs lost not only during our Liberation War, but also during this foiled attempt as well as in our fight against PKK and DAESH terror organizations.
Turkey attracted more than $180 billion FDI over the past 14 years. In the last 10 years, mega projects amounting to 250 billion USD were completed, including big scale energy and infrastructure investments.
Projects like the third bridge between Europe and Asia as well as the third airport in Istanbul - which will be the biggest in Europe - are only some examples. On the occasion of 29 October, Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan railway will be opened tomorrow.
Turkey is currently the 6th most popular tourist destination in the world, attracting more than 31 million tourists in 2016 with a growth of 4.4% on a yearly basis. Istanbul Atatürk Airport has become the biggest air hub in Europe by hosting 61 million passengers traveling through in 2015.
Being a NATO and G-20 country, recording an uninterrupted growth of 3.5 % in the last 30 quarters like Canada; being the 6th biggest economy in Europe and 17th in the world, we will carry on towards the 2023 goals of Turkey by working harder every day.
Thank you for being with us today.
Cumhuriyet Bayramımız kutlu olsun!
Monday - Friday
09:00 - 17:00
Personal Application to Consular Section: 09:00-13:00
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