World Bulletin/News Desk
The "World Africa Day" celebrations kicked off in Turkish capital Ankara on Wednesday with the tree plantation ceremony with the attendance of African ambassadors and diplomats from 24 African countries.
Speaking at the opening of the "African Countries Memorial Forest", Mayor of Kecioren Municipality of Ankara, Mustafa Ak said, "We plant trees and have this forest in the scope of strengthening relations between Turkey and African countries. As this road is on the way to the airport, every time African ambassadors pass from here, they can see the tree of their country growing."
Ethiopia's Ambassador to Turkey, Mulatu Teshome Wirtu also delivered a speech at the ceremony and stated, "50 years ago, our fathers tried to establish the union of Africa and they planted the biggest tree of Africa. It was the independence of Africa and to assist and help those who struggled in the liberation of the continent from colonialism."
He added, planting a tree here would mean peace and tranquility in Africa. "These trees that we plant in the name of Africa today will mark the friendship between Turkey and African countries," said Ambassador Wirtu.
Furthermore, Deputy Undersecretary of Turkey's Foreign Ministry, Birnur Fertekligil underlined that the tree plantation would signify the ever-increasing relations of Turkey and Africa and added, "The 50th anniversary of the African Union is a very special milestone in the nation of the African Union. As the Africa Day is being celebrated all over the day, we are happy to take part in it too. "
After the tree plantation ceremony, ambassadors and diplomats of 24 African countries attended lunch hosted by the Municipality of Kecioren.
The "World Africa Day" and the establishment of "Africa Union" is celebrated across the globe on May 25 every year.
The African Union was formed on May 25, 1963 in the scope of increasing the cooperation and solidarity among African countries.
The Organization of African Unity (OAU) was established in Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa with 32 signatory African governments. However, it was disbanded in 2002. In the same year, the name of the organization was replaced by African Union (AU). Except Morocco, it has 54 African member countries.
Morocco rejects to become a member country due to Western Sahara issue. The Union is also dedicated to concluding all forms of colonialism and giving support to countries which fight for liberation.Last Mod: 22 Mayıs 2013, 16:36