Ceremonial Reception for the Armed Forces Day of the Republic of Türkiye

More+Events ♦ Published: August 31, 2023; 23:14 ♦ (Vindobona)

Given the Armed Forces Day of the Republic of Türkiye, the Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey, H.E. Ozan Ceyhun, and Military Attaché Colonel Serdar Mercan invited to a reception. The event took place at the Turkish Embassy in Vienna and also marked the first diplomatic meeting after the summer break.

The Turkish military sees itself as an integral factor of Kemalism. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons/ Dennis Jarvis/ Turkey-1658/ CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)

The official part of the reception began with the reading of the welcome speech of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The message and significance of this speech, which was read on behalf of the Turkish Head of State, highlighted the importance of Armed Forces Day for the Republic of Türkiye.

Following this, Ambassador Ozan Ceyhun welcomed the guests present. His welcome emphasized the historical significance of Armed Forces Day and paid tribute to the commitment and sacrifices made by the Armed Forces for the security and stability of Türkiye.

Special attention was given to Colonel Serdar Mercan, the new military attaché who had recently arrived in Vienna. In his welcoming speech, he highlighted the importance of bilateral relations between Turkey and Austria and emphasized the role of the Armed Forces in strengthening these relations.

The reception was not only an opportunity to pay tribute to the historical events and the current significance of Armed Forces Day but also to strengthen diplomatic relations between the Republic of Türkiye and Austria. The speeches of the Turkish President, Ambassador, and Military Attaché underlined the importance of cooperation and commitment of both countries for peace, security, and stability in the region and worldwide.

The Armed Forces Day of the Republic of Türkiye not only commemorates the victories of the past but also highlights the active role of the Turkish Armed Forces in maintaining national security and promoting peace. The event at the Turkish Embassy in Vienna specifically expressed this and underlined the importance of bilateral relations between Turkey and Austria.

Background of the Armed Forces Day

Armed Forces Day, which is celebrated on August 30, commemorates the Turkish victory over the occupation in Anatolia in 1922. This historic event, which began on the orders of Supreme Commander Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, symbolizes a decisive turning point in the history of the Republic of Türkiye. The victory illustrated to the world the determination of a nation that stood up for its independence and love of its homeland. The Treaty of Sèvres, which imposed unfair conditions on Turkey, was rendered obsolete by this victory, and the foundation for building the Republic was laid.

The role of the military in Türkiye is of historical significance. Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the republic, placed great emphasis on defending the republican heritage and protecting it from religious fundamentalism. The military played a crucial role in the resistance efforts against the Allies and Greeks during World War I and the liberation struggle. This historical context lends deeper meaning to Armed Forces Day.

Current developments in the political role of the armed forces

However, the evolution of the political landscape in Türkiye has brought changes over the years. For decades, the military was considered strong, but the AKP government led by Recep Tayyip Erdogan changed this dynamic. The shift in the balance of power brought tensions between the executive branch and the military. Reforms aimed at civilian control of the military were initiated, and the role of generals in the political landscape has changed.

Today, the Turkish Armed Forces continue to serve their country and play an important role in Türkiye's security as well as in maintaining peace in the region and around the world. Armed Forces Day not only commemorates historic victories but also highlights the continued importance of the military to Türkiye's security and stability.

While the history of the Turkish Armed Forces has been marked by ups and downs, its role as the guardian and defender of the country remains of great importance. Recent political developments have shown that the balance of power can change, and the Turkish Armed Forces have adapted to the changing political environment to continue to play a significant role in national security and stability.

Embassy of the Republic of Türkiye in Austria