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Atatürk passed away at 9:05 am on November 10, 1938. At that moment, 65 years later, All of Turkey stopped to mark a minutes silence, with traffic halted in the street and Turkish citizens standing to attention.
In his message to commemorate the passing of Atatürk, President Ahmet Necdet Sezer said that the principles that the nations founding father had laid down would continue to guide the country in the future.
Atatürk was the symbol of national unity, independence, modernisation and enlightenment, Sezer said.
The Turkish nation is aware of its past and the meaning and importance of the sacrifices and struggles made and efforts undertaken, The Presidents message read. It is our mission to protect the values of the Republic, to digest its thoughts and philosophy. The Turkish nation is resolved to protect and keep alive the modern, democratic and secular Republic forever.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoan described Atatürk as a great world leader, a military genius and a statesman.
The Turkish nation continued to walk on the path shown by Atatürk to become modern civilisation, he said.