Every April 23 has been bestowed upon children as a gift, celebrated nationwide as National Sovereignty and Children’s Day.
April 23, 1920, the date the Grand National Assembly of Turkey opened, can be considered a turning point for the nation’s then-ill fortune, or as Stefan Zweig named his book on important turning points in history, one of the “Decisive Moments in History.” Nothing could be more natural than bestowing upon the future owners and representatives of sovereignty, that is to say the children of today, the date on which the first session of the GNAT—which was founded under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and put the “national” in the National Struggle in its representation of the national will against occupation armies—was held.
Furthermore, with the desire for April 23 to be not just a holiday for our own children, we started sharing it with the world’s children since 1979. Children from fifty countries on average attend the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation Children’s Festival every year. This year, children from around the world will heed the call of Rumi to meet in Konya within the scope of the festival, rendering messages of peace and friendship even more meaningful.
We wish for many more April 23s and many more holidays...