UPDATE – Turkey celebrates Republic Day


By Sarp Ozer and Ozcan Yildirim

ANKARA (AA) – Millions of Turks across the country and abroad celebrated the 94th anniversary of the proclamation of Republic of Turkey on Sunday.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim and other high-level state officials visited the mausoleum, also known as Anitkabir, of founder of modern Turkey, Ghazi Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

In remarks recorded in the official Anitkabir memorial book, Erdogan said the spirit which brought victory to Turkish War of Liberation and gave life to the republic is still alive today as it was 94 years ago.

Referring to last year’s coup bid, the president added: “The resistance which passed into history as the July 15 epic is the embodiment of this spirit and will. ”

Fetullah Terrorist Organization and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, in Turkey, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Celebrations linked to Republic Day remain ongoing in several cities of Turkey.

Google also marked Turkey’s Republic Day on its home page, displaying a Turkish flag and the Google logo in red, which is the color of the country’s flag.

In capital Ankara, thousands of Turks marched in front of the Turkish parliament.

Police had taken strict security measures in the area for the march; some streets were closed to traffic; riot police were also deployed along the route.

Veteran Turkish soldiers as well as school students carrying Turkish flags and Ataturk posters participated in the march.

In Turkey’s largest city Istanbul, a huge parade was organized. A celebratory message from President Erdogan, which was sent to Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin, was also read out.

Addressing the crowd, Sahin said Turks showed the world an epic fight for salvation during the foundation of the republic.

“The republic is the final word of our nation, which defends and lauds brotherhood against separatism,” he added.

Istanbulites held Turkish flags while watching the parade and applauded military and police officers' march.

Heavy security measures were also taken in Istanbul and people entered the parade area after a body search.

The Republic Day was also marked at Turkey’s representations abroad.