World Bulletin / News Desk
Today marks the victory of Turkish force against the allied forces. In a service Turkey's President had said that "the spirit" of the Gallipoli Campaign, or the Canakkale Battles, of the World War I was the defining characteristic of Turkey's understanding of a nation and nationalism.
"Ones that could not understand the Canakkale spirit could not understand nation and our nationalism either," he told a ceremony in Turkey's northwestern Canakkale province on Monday to commemorate the 98th anniversary of the battles -- one of the Turks' greatest victories during the WWI -- and to honor the fallen Ottoman-Turkish troops.
The Gallipoli Campaign saw 56,000 to 68,000 Ottoman-Turkish soldiers dead coming from diverse "millets" or nations from across the empire and more than 100 thousand others wounded.
"Ones that could not understand the determination for solidarity and self-sacrifice in Canakkale could not understand the brotherhood in Turkey," Erdogan said.
"A manifest of our nation and our notion of nationalism was composed while a legend that would change the direction of history was being written in Canakkale," Erdogan added.
"The Canakkale Victory was not the victory of a single ethnic background, a nation or a race, rather the victory of all sister nations and all brethren in Anatolia, Thrace, Turkey and the world."
From April 25, 1915 to January 9, 1916, a joint British and French assault was mounted to occupy the Ottoman capital of Istanbul and secure a sea route to Russia.
The attempt failed, leading to heavy casualties on both sides.
Battle of Gelibolu (Gallipoli) restored the Turkish Army's prestige in the world and constituted a milestone in Turkish nation's struggle for independence.
The events, considered the Ottoman Empire's biggest achievement during World War I, are known in the West as the "Gallipoli Campaign" or the "Battle of Gelibolu."
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