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Turkey’s acclaimed poet Nazım Hikmet was commemorated at the graveyard where he is buried in Moscow on the 49th anniversary of his death. A concert and poetry reading event were also organized in his honor

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On the 49th anniversary of his death, Nazım Hikmet was commemorated at his graveyard in Moscow with Turkish Ambassador Aydın Sezgin’s (third from left) participation. AA photo

On the 49th anniversary of his death, Nazım Hikmet was commemorated at his graveyard in Moscow with Turkish Ambassador Aydın Sezgin’s (third from left) participation. AA photo

One of Turkey’s most famous poets Nazım Hikmet was commemorated at the Novodevici graveyard in Moscow June 3, the 49th anniversary of his death. The Russian-Turkish Businessmen Association (RTIB) organized a concert and poetry reading for the commemoration.

Hikmet lovers gathered at a concert hall in Moscow and listened to his poems performed by Yavuz Telli with musical accompaniment by Turkish musician Yavuz Bingöl.

“Today we commemorate Nazım Hikmet with enthusiasm, just like his birthday,” said RTIB Chairman Ali Galip Savaşır when delivering the event’s opening speech.

To Savaşır and his fellow Hikmet fans, Moscow is more than a city where they work and live, it is a compassionate land that once embraced Hikmet at the most difficult time in his life, Savaşır said.

“It makes me excited even to know that Nazım walked on the same roads where we walked today. While working to improve Turkish-Russian relations, one day in a year gives us the opportunity to remember a respected life dedicated to struggle. It makes us listen to [his] poetry, each line tells us of love, faith and struggle. It brings us together. This is why we love Nazım,” he said.

The founder of the Russian-Turkish Research Center (RUTAM), journalist Hakan Aksay, has spent most of his life in Russia. He spoke of the circumstances that brought Hikmet to Russia. The political facts of his time dragged Nazım to a different place, he said. “Our poet suffered a lot because of us [Turkey]. We were unfair to him, we denationalized him. But Turkey and Turkish society has changed. As a result, Nazım is coming into his own. I cannot say ‘he came’ because there are many things to do such as including his works in school programs, opening cultural centers about Nazım in Turkey and Russia and many others. But at least it is a positive development that the decision that the decision of Council of Ministers to denaturalize him was lifted in 2009,” Aksay said.

Great love, Vera
Hikmet’s late wife Vera Tulyakov had put forth a great effort to ensure his cultural inheritance survived. “She might not have been loved by Nazım’s lovers and faced unfair accusations from time to time but I remember that Tulyakova attended a night for Nazım that we organized a short time before she died in the beginning of the 2000s. She had great love for Nazım and this continued for many long years after he died,” Aksay said.

RTIB Deputy Chairman Naki Karaaslan said they had organized commemoration events for more than 10 years in Moscow. “Our goal is for Nazım to get what he deserves. Our youth should know him because the new generation does not know him. This is why our union is doing its best [to organize events],” Karaaslan said.

Among the attendees of the commemoration ceremony were Turkey’s ambassador to Moscow, Aydın Sezgin, theater actors Selçuk Yöntem and Ahmet Taylan, and Turkish citizens living in Moscow.

June/05/2012

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