- Rider(s):Atatürk, Mustafa Kemal
(1881-1938) was a Turkish army officer, reformist statesman, and the first President of Turkey. He is credited with being the founder of the Republic of Turkey. His surname, Atatürk (meaning “Father of the Turks”), was granted to him in 1934 and forbidden to any other person by the Turkish parliament. Atatürk was a military officer during World War I. Following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I, he successfully led the Turkish National Movement in the Turkish War of Independence. Having established a provisional government in Ankara, he defeated the forces sent by the Allies. Atatürk then embarked upon a program of political, economic, and cultural reforms, seeking to transform the former Ottoman Empire into a modern and secular nation-state. Under his leadership, thousands of new schools were built, primary education was made free and compulsory, and women were given equal civil and political rights, while the burden of taxation on peasants was reduced.
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