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Monday, 22 June 2009
Page: 6822

Mr LINDSAY (8:05 PM) —On the heights above Anzac Cove is a very significant statue, and it is of course of Ataturk. It is at the base of that statue that those famous words that the member for Maranoa repeated in this chamber earlier tonight appear. But not too many people know that there is another statue of Ataturk on a headland overlooking the sea in Australia. You might ask: ‘Why is there a statue of Ataturk? Where is it?’ Western Australians will know: it is in Albany. And why is it in Albany? That statue and its commemoration of Ataturk tells part of the story of the special relationship between Australia and Turkey.

On 1 November 1914, 30,000 Australian and New Zealand troops departed from Albany. They were the first ANZAC convoy to leave Australia and were bound for training in Egypt and then on to Gallipoli. Many of the soldiers who left Albany that day would never see Australia again. Over 8,000 Australians died at Gallipoli. Ataturk’s famous words, ‘After having lost their lives on this land, they have become our sons as well,’ also now appear on the Kemal Ataturk Memorial on Anzac Parade here in Canberra. The City of Albany remembers the words and the actions of Ataturk. He is commemorated by the statue on the headland as well as by Ataturk Channel in the Princess Royal Harbour.

There is nothing quite as special as having the privilege of being at Anzac Cove on Anzac Day. This was the day in 1915 when, many historians argue, Australia finally stepped off the coattails of Britain and became a nation in its own right. Both Australia and Turkey regard the 1915 Gallipoli landings as an event of particular significance in their modern histories. Every year, a growing number of Australian and Turkish citizens attend commemorative services at Gallipoli, with approximately 10,000 Australians attending the 91st anniversary commemorative service—

A division having been called in the House of Representatives—

Sitting suspended from 8.07 pm to 8.28 pm

Mr LINDSAY —Turkey occupies a geostrategic position between Europe, the Caucasus, central Asia and the Middle East. With a land area of approximately 771,000 square kilometres, it is slightly smaller than New South Wales. Most of Turkey lies in Asia, but three per cent is in Europe. Istanbul, the largest city, with a population of around 12 million, serves as a bridge between the continents of Europe and Asia.

Most members of the Turkish born community in Australia are Muslims, mainly of the Sunni and Alevi sects. The 2001 census records 29,821 Turkish born migrants and an overall community size, including second and third generation, of 54,596. Other estimates suggest the Turkish community in Australia could be as large as 100,000 people.

In 2005 two-way trade was around $695 million. Australian exports to Turkey totalled $345 million, with imports totalling $350 million.

The DEPUTY SPEAKER (Hon. JE Moylan)—Order! The time allotted for this debate has expired. The debate is adjourned and the resumption of the debate will be made an order of the day for the next sitting. The honourable member will have leave to continue speaking when the debate is resumed.