Turkish embassy remembers its war heroes, martyrs and national poet

Zubair Qureshi

Ambassador of Turkey Ihsan Mustafa Yurdakul on Thursday delivered a passionate speech while glorifying the historic Canakkale Victory of March 18, 1915 and paid rich tributes to the sacrifices of the Turkish army which did not hesitate to lay down its lives to lay down the foundation of a new Turkey from its ashes.

March 18, 2021 marks the 106th anniversary of the Canakkale Victory also known as Gallipoli Battle when the British troops had to face a humiliating defeat by the brave Turkish soldiers who had made the city of Canakkale simply ‘impassable.’

Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood was the Chief Guest on the occasion while ambassadors, diplomats and defence attachés, intellectuals and scholars attended the ceremony.

The event also featured the anniversary of the Adaptation of the National Anthem of Turkey and Commemoration of the National Poet Mehmet Akif Ersoy.

Chief Guest Shafqat Mahmood in his brief address said the Battle of Canakkale was indeed the beginning of a new Turkey that imbibed a deep sense of patriotism. In that battle, from the ashes of the old Turkey rose the new Turkey.

He also paid rich tributes to the national poet of Turkey Mehmet Akif Ersoy whose verses inspired the nation to stand against the usurpers of that time.

Ambassador Ihsan Mustafa was of the view that despite heavy odds during the WWI and facing the most modernized militaries of the era, Turkish soldiers challenged the enemy under the leadership of Ghazi Mustafa Kemal Ataruk and changed the entire course of history.

Canakkale is a symbol of our allegiance as Turkish nation to our homeland, independence and to the sacred values that make us Turks, he said.

“The biggest responsibility that falls on our shoulders in order to duly defend our country which is our ancestors’ legacy to us, is to feel in our hearts today the spirit, excitement and the resolution felt in the Battle of Canakkale,” said the ambassador.

Writer and columnist Farooq Adil in his paper shared with the audience how he felt himself elated and inspired when he first listened to the national anthem of Turkey.

While listening to Akif Ersoy I felt as if I was listening to Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Allama Iqbal in Turkish language, he said.

The highlight of the event however was the presentation of the National Anthem of Turkey and kalam (verses) of Mehmet Akif Ersoy by students of the Pak-Turk Maarif School.

Two little girls, Beyza, 8, and Buse, 10, warmed the hearts of the audience with recitation of Mehmet Akif Ersoy’s poetry.

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