Turkey’s Consulate General in Chicago late Saturday held an event marking the third anniversary of the July 15, 2016 deadly coup attempt by Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) to overthrow the Turkish government.
Following the screening of a documentary consisting of footage from the July 15 coup attempt, Consul General Umut Acar addressed the hall and told about what happened on the night of the coup attempt and how FETO poses a danger for the U.S.
“The pain of July 15 never ends”, Acar said and added: “As we listen to the stories over and over again, the pain becomes even more evident in us.
“If our country is not in chaos today and if we can live in democracy and independence, we owe it to the heroes who took to the streets on July 15, threw themselves in front of the tanks and resisted this massive cruelty and betrayal.”
The Turkish nation exerted a historic fight on July 15, 2016, following a call from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to defend their democracy.
A total of 251 people was martyred and nearly 2,200 others were injured during the night of defeated coup in an effort to defend the national democracy.
Acar went on to say that Turkey’s expectation from the Turkish community in the U.S. to tell the world that the struggle is not only between government and the terrorist FETO organization, but it’s the common challenge of all Turkish people.
Alper Camlibel, a former police officer and a member of the University of Wisconsin whose friend was martyred in the coup attempt, called for unity and solidarity between Turkish people.
“We need to keep our tolerance to each other at a very high level,” Camlibel said and added: “As a country, if we value people according to their qualifications, we become a happier and more prosperous country.”
Among the attendees were Seyda Calderwood, the representative of Turkish society; Talat Otman, the president of the Arab-American Businessmen’s Association; and Neil Fleckman, a U.S. citizen living in Istanbul.
Umut Deniz Topcuoglu, a young Turkish composer, also performed folk songs at the event.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
*Writing by Erdogan Cagatay Zontur