Spirit of Gallipoli shared

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Victorian parliamentarians have received commemorative plaques from the Australian Turkish community to honour the Gallipoli Centenary.

The commemorative plaques feature Atatürk’s Ode – the renowned tribute from the first President of the Republic of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk honouring the Anzacs killed at Gallipoli.

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Presentation of the Gallipoli Centenary plaques: (l to r) Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade Adem Somyurek, Ramazan Altintas (Turkish Sub-Branch Victorian RSL), Adem Genç (Australian Turkish Advocacy Alliance), President of the Legislative Council Bruce Atkinson and Speaker Telmo Languiller

Atatürk’s words, inscribed on the plaques and on a memorial at Anzac Cove, speak of shared loss and peace:

“Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives… You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side now here in this country of ours… You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.”

The commemorative plaques were presented to the President of the Legislative Council Bruce Atkinson and Speaker of the Legislative Assembly Telmo Languiller at Parliament House by the Executive Director of the Australian Turkish Advocacy Alliance, Adem Genç, and the President of the Turkish Sub-Branch of the Victorian RSL, Ramazan Altintas.

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Victorian Parliament's Presiding Officers receive the Gallipoli Centenary plaques from the Australian Turkish community

The Presiding Officers thanked the Australian Turkish community for the gracious gift, noting that the plaques are a fitting commemoration of the service and sacrifice at Gallipoli.

Watch the video highlights from the presentation

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MPs Frank McGuire and Natalie Suleyman, Co-Convenor and Secretary of the Parliamentary Friends of Turkey, were grateful for the commemorative plaques

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