Yongin Anıtı Konuşması

A. Hakan Okçal 15.10.2015

It is a distinct honor for me to attend this ceremony to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the Turkish participation
in the Korean War.

The Republic of Turkey has always been an integral part of
the free world based on democratic values. When the Republic of Korea was brutally attacked by the North and its allies, Turkey did not hesitate to
join the UN Coalition Forces in 1950 to defend the independence and freedoms and
democracy of the Korean people as a responsible member of the international community.

Turkey dispatched a reinforced brigade to fight in Korea under
the UN Command, which was changed on a yearly rotational basis
during the war. Thus, throughout three years of war, the total Turkish troops under
the UN Command amounted close to twenty-thousand. They fought gallantly wherever they faced the invading enemy troops shedding their blood
and sacrificing their lives. The hills of Kumyangjang-ni just nearby, where one of the fiercest battles of the war took place is a solemn witness of the bravery and fighting might of the unknown Turkish soldier.

Dear friends, Turkey's Korean War casualties which are estimated to be around one thousand are proportionally the highest among the participating nations. Our soldiers fought gallantly
for freedoms and democracy in Korea. They also fought for the
honor of their sacred flag representing the honor of their people and the martyrs
of a long proud history, together with their Korean and UN
Coalition allies. They demonstrated the bravery of the Turkish soldier to friend and foe once more.
Turkey is proud that it stood by its Korean brothers in
defending this respectable country and its values.

Hereby, I want to thank the Korean people for never forgetting the Turkish contributions and support in their difficult times. This monument in Yongin is a solid token reminding us of the Korean respect for the Turkish sacrifices in the war. I would like to thank the 55th Division for organizing this memorial ceremony every year around this time to mark the anniversary of Turkish participation in the war.

The Turkish participation in the Korean war has forged a unique friendship what we call today the "blood brotherhood" of our nations. There is a special place of Korea
in the hearts and minds of the Turkish citizens.
The same
is also true for Koreans. As ambassador, I can witness the warm and heartfelt feelings of the Korean people towards my country in every part of this beautiful land.

We are proud that our sacrifices have not gone in vain. Korea and Turkey have gone a long way since the war. Both countries have become important regional and global actors. Today we have a vibrant and healthy relationship with Korea.

We appreciate Korea's great strides towards building a better future for its citizens in a free world.

Korea can count on Turkey as an ally for building a better world. Turkey also counts on Korea in overcoming its present day difficulties as a trusted friend. As you all know, Turkey is faced right now with the scourge of terrorism. We will beat this enemy with the support of our friends. That is a solemn pledge that we make for our martyrs and for the future generations.

As we bow before the honorable memories of the Turkish troops who bravely sacrificed their lives and shed their blood, let me thank you all for coming from long distances to attend this auspicious ceremony. At this moment our thoughts and prayers are with all those who have fallen in the Korean War. We will always cherish their memories.

Durmuş Ersin Erçin Ambassador
Monday - Friday

10:00 - 13:00 / 14:00 - 17:00

The working hours of the Consular Section is as follows: Monday to Friday: 10:00-13:00 and 14:00-17:00.
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