- mayor's office
“We will keep on walking on the path with our enthusiasm to look after Atatürk’s legacy and primary values of Turkish Republic.”
“First Step March to Independence” organized within the frame of 19 May the Commemoration of Atatürk, Youth and Sports Day celebrations has brought a great joy to the streets of Beşiktaş. During the crowded march, many citizens of all ages walked to Beşiktaş Pier with flags in their hands while singing anthems. Beşiktaş Mayor Rıza Akpolat was also at the forefront of the march accompanying our citizens.
The march that started at 16:00 PM in Akaretler on 16 May, Monday was completed with the symbolic ceremony taken place at the Beşiktaş Pier where Veteran Mustafa Kemal Atatürk took the first step for national independence movement on 16 May 1919. After the performance of Beşiktaş Municipality Folk Dance Group, Mayor Rıza Akpolat has expressed his emotions with these words:
“The event of ‘First Step March to Independence’ organized by our municipality has become traditional now. Veteran Mustafa Kemal Atatürk took his first step from the starting point of our march and boarded Kartal Steamboat, then transferring to SS Bandırma, he started our national independence struggle. When we describe Beşiktaş, we always say that it is the city where two continents meet, it is the city of chief admirals, the place of Hayreddin Barbarossa. And we also say that Beşiktaş is where Veteran Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s house is located in which he made the plans of the independence war. Beşiktaş is the name of the place where Atatürk uttered the words “As they have come, so they will go,” when enemy ships came to the shores of Dolmabahçe Palace. It is the name of the place where Atatürk made many important decisions both for his life and for our nation, and where he departed this life. We are fulfilling our duties with this awareness and trying our best to preserve the legacy of our Atatürk. We are on the first day of 19th May celebrations that will last for 4 days. We will continue celebrating these 4 days altogether, to our heart’s content as citizens of Beşiktaş hand in hand, righteous and worthy of Beşiktaş’s importance.”