Turkish Football Federation Chairman (TFF) Yıldırım Demirören and the Board Members have visited Kilis to show their support for the Olive Branch Operation and have held their March meeting in Kilis.
Composed of Chairman Yıldırım Demirören, Deputy Chairmen Servet Yardımcı, Nihat Özdemir, Hüsnü Güreli, Ali Dürüst, İbrahim Usta, Administrative and Executive Board Members Cengiz Zülfikaroğlu and Ali Düşmez, Board Members Mustafa Çağlar, Alaattin Aykaç, Mete Düren and Fuat Guguloğlu and Secretary General Genel Kadir Kardaş as well as A National Team Coach Tayfur Havutcu and Under 21 National Team Coach Alpay Özalan, the TFF delegation was also accompanied by many sportspeople.
Demirören: "Our hearts beat with our soldiers"
Following the Board Meeting, TFF Chairman Yıldırım Demirören has met the managers and footballers of the amateur sports clubs in Kilis and listened to their requests and problems. In his speech, Chairman Demirören has said that they support the people of Kilis: "As TFF we hold our board meetings in various cities of our country from time to time. In a period when Turkey is conducting the Olive Branch Operation, Kilis remains much important to us. We would like to offer our condolences for our fallen soldiers and hope that our soldiers wounded during the Olive Branch Operation will get well soon. Our soldiers should know that Turkish people support them. Our hearts beat with our soldiers in the operation. May God give them strength and bestow patience for our state and nation. We will continue our fight until the final terrorist is eliminated. Football and sports remain an important element here. As the operation goes on on the other side of the border, football games continue here and in Turkey. As TFF we have come here to show our material and spiritual support for the amateur clubs in Kilis. Our Board has decided to offer financial support for our clubs. We will provide 15 thousand TL. This is our duty. TFF will always stand by the people of Kilis, our soldiers and all of you."
Visit to Office of the Governor of Kilis
TFF Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and the delegation have then visited Kilis Governor Mehmet Tekinarslan in his office. Welcomed by Governor Mehmet Tekinarslan and children holding olive branches and in national team uniforms, TFF delegation have talked to children and have taken pictures together.
Governor Tekinarslan has expressed their satisfaction from the visit and thanked the delegation: "Turkey is going through a tough period. During the Olive Branch Operation process, 40 missiles have targeted our city in the first 10 days and 2 people got killed while 40 people got injured. All of the wounded have been discharged from the hospital and they now continue their daily life. In this process our city's stand and determination has been of utmost importance."
Saying that they would like to make use of the combining and unifying power of football, TFF Chairman Demirören has made a statement here: "We know that football is an important instrument for friendship and brotherhood, unity and cohesion. We would therefore like to do what we can do best and please Kilis."
After the speeches delivered, TFF Chairman Demirören has presented Governor Tekinarslan a National Team uniform and has also visited the photography exhibition composed of the pictures of the offices and mosques hit by the missiles.
A Football Field to Be Built im Kilis
Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and the board members have also visited Kilis Mayor Hasan Kara, who has said that Kilis people, the young and the old in unity stand with the state and the military and will continue to do so.
During the visit, Demirören has said that Kilis is an important city: "It is a pioneering province for Turkey in the Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch operations. Unfortunately it is also our only province hit by attacks from abroad. We are aware of the problems suffered by the people in Kilis. As TFF we are visiting Kilis to show we will support Kilis people. We represent Turkey. We have come here to show that all of Turkey stands with Kilis people."
Also giving the happy news that the football field ordered by the UEFA in Jordan will also built in Kilis, TFF Chairman Demirören has presented Mayor Kara a National Team Uniform with the number 79 on it.
TFF delegation has then visited the shops on Cumhuriyet Avenue.
Also visiting the Kilis Police Directorate, TFF delegation has met Provincial Police Director Günter Şenses and the policemen there. Chatting with the policemen there and presenting them with national team uniforms, Demirören and the TFF delegation have then ate with the police and prayed.
Groundbreaking ceremony held for Çobanbey Field
After their meetings in Kilis, the TFF delegation has moved on to the Çobanbey town on the border with Syria. TFF Chairman Yıldırım Demirören and the delegation have held the groundbreaking ceremony to be built by the TFF in the town. Speaking in the ceremony and surrounded by the locals and children wearing the national uniform, Chairman Demirören has said that today Turkish soldiers are fighting for the safety of us all in the mountains during the Olive Branch Operation: "As TFF we have decided to build a football field here as instructed by our President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and led by our Governor. Hopefully we will see our young people play together in unity and cohesion on these fields. May you enjoy this facility."
Visit to Gaziantep Governor's Office
TFF Chairman Yıldırım Demirören has also visited Gaziantep Governor Ali Yerlikaya in his office. During the visit, Yıldırım Demirören has said that they seek to contribute to brotherhood by using the unifying and cohesive power of football. Governor Yerlikaya has said that they are delighted by the visit and has thanked Demirören and the board members. After the mutual presentation of gifts, TFF delegation has ended the visit by taking a group picture before the "Let's Share Together" motto in the Gaziantep square.