Ministry of Foreign Affairs Press service Statements
Tuesday, 08 October 2019. PDF Print E-mail
Memorial plaque in honor of the assassinated Turkish Ambassador unveiled
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Address by First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ivica Dacic at a ceremony of unveiling a memorial plaque in honor of the assassinated former Turkish Ambassador Galip Balkar:

Distinguished Mr. Minister,
Esteemed Mr. Aydin Balkar,
Dear guests from the Republic of Turkey,
Ladies and gentlemen,
Dear friends,

Not so long ago, on 9 March 1983, Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the SFR of Yugoslavia Galip Balkar was fatally wounded. His assassination took place in this very spot, corner of Belgrade's Generala Zdanova and Bulevar Revolucije Streets, as they were called then. That day, our state witnessed first-hand an act of violence.

Today, we have gathered here to pay a lasting tribute to our diplomatic colleague, former Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the SFRY. By honoring his memory we are doing something that was long overdue.

We inscribe the name of Galip Balkar in a book memorializing forever diplomats who indebted their homeland with their sacrifice. On that date, this unfortunate event also endangered the lives of other residents of Belgrade. We should not forget Colonel Slobodan Brajevic and Zorica Zolotic who confronted the attackers and student Zeljko Milivojevic who lost his life in an attempt to overpower them. This young man's sacrifice epitomized the collective spirit of our people and our country, thus best reflecting that Belgrade residents cannot be so easily intimated by using terror and fear.

Today, 36 years after this horrible event, by paying tribute to the Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the SFRY, Galip Balkar, our state and our people once again unequivocally condemn all acts of extremism and any attempts at creating disorder or causing destabilization. This day and action underscore the importance of no violence and of overcoming disputes peacefully!

Dear friends,

I hope that evoking this appalling event will help raise awareness of the fact that life of every individual matters as a universal value and that we as a civilization should seek, through our joint awareness, to eliminate any possibility of a similar tragedy happening ever again in the future.

Eternal glory to him!

Thank you for your attention."