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Speaking in Diyarbakir, Gul reaffirms Turkish as nation's official language

Speaking in Diyarbakir, Gul reaffirms Turkish as nation's official language

President Abdullah Gul, in his first remarks on the issue, yesterday ruled out the use of the Kurdish language in official business, saying that Turkey 's official language is Turkish. "The official language of the Republic of Turkey is Turkish, and so it will remain," he said, speaking in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir . "The language of public agencies is also Turkish. It is our common language, but it is also true that among the citizens of the Republic of Turkey we have people and regions who speak different languages. We have Arabic speakers in other areas, just as you have Kurdish speakers here. There are languages spoken by our non-Muslim citizens, whose numbers are dwindling. All of these languages are ours; they belong to us all." Gul made his comments after meeting with officials, including Diyarbakir Mayor Osman Baydemir, who presented him with a Turkish-Kurdish dictionary, saying that peace can only be reached through dialogue and consensus.

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