World Bulletin / News Desk
In the morning, top government officials and politicians attended a ceremony held at Anitkabir, the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, including Parliament Speaker Ismail Kahraman, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, and other dignitaries.
In remarks in the mausoleum’s memorial guestbook, Kahraman wrote: “The Turkish Grand National Assembly [parliament], which you [Ataturk] presided over for the first time, continues its duty with great faith and dedication.”
“Turkey will develop further and will always move forward,” Kahraman added. “We commemorate you with these feelings.”
The special day in Turkey is marked by a festival for children, and public offices, schools, and the private sector also hold programs.
Yildirim also convened a symbolic Cabinet meeting with children at the Cankaya Palace.
In his message marking the day, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said that reaching a happier and safer future is the only aim of Turkey’s parliament both past and present.
Dedicating this important date to children and celebrating the “birthday of this parliament” with children is something else that sets Turkey’s parliament apart from the rest of the world, Soylu added.
The Turkish General Staff celebrated the occasion with a special poster featuring the photos of children of martyred Turkish soldiers.
On Monday, on its Turkish homepage, Google featured a special doodle spelling out its name with a children’s band marching, the Turkish flag leading the way.
The April 23 celebrations focus on children after Ataturk, the first speaker of the parliament, dedicated the day to children as the nation’s future.
The Grand National Assembly or parliament met for the first time in 1920 in Ankara, the country’s future capital, during the War of Independence to lay the foundations for an independent, secular and modern republic.