ANKARA: "The President Cordially Invites…" A Wide Variety Of Peopl

Nilufer ZENGIN

BÝA, Turkey
Last Modified 11-09-2007 13.28

Newly-elected President Abdullah Gul has given his first reception
at Cankaya Palace in Ankara.

Representatives of NGOs, the media and the business world were invited.

Invited were representatives of the Turkish Union of Chambers and Stock
Exchanges (TOBB), the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF), the Ziraat
and Halk banks, the Association of Turkish Industrialists and Business
People (TUSIAD), the Independent Association of Industrialists and
Business People (MUSIAD), the Turkish Assembly of Exporters (TIM),
the Confederation of Revolutionary Workers’ Syndicates (DISK), the
HAK-Is trade union, the Turkish Society of Journalists (TGC), the
Turkish Trade Union of Journalists (TGS), the Association of Modern
Journalists (CGD) and the Anatolia Agency.

Important names of the business world were joined by religious
representatives: The Armenian Patriarch Mesrop Mutafyan, Turkey’s
Chief Rabbi Ishak Haleva, the President of the Alevi Cem Foundation
Izzettin Dogan were all invited.

The media was represented by Vakit, Yeni Asya, Samanyolu TV and the
Cihan News Agency, Reuters, AP and El Cezire TV.

There were delegates from the Young Civil Movement, the Human Rights
Foundation (IHD), the Turkish Human Rights Foundation (TIHV), the
Flying Broom, the Capital City Platform, and the Association for the
Support and Education of Women Candidates (Ka-Der).

The Young Civil Movement representative gave Gul a present of a
pair of red Converse shoes, which represent the movement. Gul said,
"You got my shoe size right. I wear 43."

Gul introduced members of the movement to other guests by saying,
"Do you know these young people? They write very witty articles. They
practice opposition with beautiful irony. They are working for

Zeynep Piyade, the president of the Capital City Platform, the first
headscarved woman to be invited to the Palace in the last seven years,
asked Gul why his wife, Hayrunnisa Gul, was not present. She said:
"She should not stay in the shadows." Gul answered, "She is not the
kind of woman to stay in the shadows."

Halime Guner of the Flying Broom said, "At one point I hesitated about
coming because one woman [meaning Hayrunnisa Gul] is locked up next
door or upstairs."

Gul answered, "She is a very powerful person. She will surmount
this difficulty. There will be days when I will be together with Ms
Gul. Believe me, that will be soon."

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