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Palestinian Muhammad's greatest dream!

22.08.2017 899 Okunma Sayısı

During the closing ceremony of the 8th Turkish Summer School, Palestinian Muhammad cried out to the world his dream for the future: "I wish Palestine will become a free and independent country like Turkey one day!"

“Turkish Summer School” program organized by Yunus Emre Enstitüsü for the 8th time this year, ended. 700 students from 57 countries learned Turkish in 22 different cities and 23 different universities in Turkey for nearly a month and got the opportunity to practice Turkish in everyday life blending it with Anatolian culture.

Young foreign students who gathered in the "Turkish Summer School" closing event held on August 15th in the Presidential Complex, said goodbye to Turkey with a grand ceremony. In the "Turkish Letters Written To Future" section of the event,  Palestinian Muhammad Natsheh's dream for Palestine touched the audience.

Students from Azerbaijan, Albania and Palestine in Yunus Emre Enstitüsü Turkish Summer School program, read the letters they wrote in Turkish where they illustrated their world for 20 years later with the theme "Letters to the Future 2017". Palestinian Muhammad Natsheh cried out to the world his dream for the future in his letter.

Muhammad Natsheh caught the attention of Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım, Minister of Culture and Tourism Numan Kurtulmuş and President of Yunus Emre Enstitüsü Şeref Ateş with his emotional letter. We got the chance to hold a short interview with Palestinian Muhammad Natsheh and asked him about his feelings and thoughts about Turkey.

Could you tell us a bit about yourself?

My name is Muhammad Natsheh. I am from Palestine, and I live in Jerusalem. I'm 33 years old. I am from Yunus Emre Enstitüsü centre in Jerusalem. This summer I visited your country to attend the Turkish Summer School organized by Yunus Emre Enstitüsü. I have been in Turkey for nearly a month. I visited magnificent cities, I met with wonderful people.

What about your education and your profession?

I studied computer science at Abdullah Bin Hussein University in Jerusalem, but I have not worked in this field. I worked in a communication company for 3 years. Now I'm a toy salesman.

How did you decide to learn Turkish?

Because I love Turkey and Turkish language.

Were you familiar with Turkey? What have you heard about Turkey since childhood? What do you know about Turkey?

The ties of fraternity and friendship between Turks and Palestinians are very strong. We have strong historical relations, and shared histories. Turks have always been on Palestine's side. I've known this since I was a kid.

Is it after the war or always?

Always. That is why Turks are my dearest brothers and sisters.

When did you first visit Turkey?

I visited Turkey in 2016 for the first time to attend Yunus Emre Enstitüsü Turkish Summer School . This year I participated in the student group in Sakarya.

What are your impressions on Sakarya?

I loved Sakarya. A very calm, peaceful, lush city. People are as warm, hospitable and generous.

You are in Turkey for a month. Have you favourite foods? Which is your favourite Turkish dish?

Palestinian and Turkish cuisines are quite similar. Especially Sakarya Kebab and Kemalpaşa dessert are my favourites. I also liked İnegöl Meatballs I had in Bursa.

Which other cities did you visit?

This year I had the chance to visit Bursa, Çanakkale and Sakarya's Hendek district. Especially Bursa was one of the top cities I wanted to visit. It has a very rich history. I have been curious about Ottoman works for a long time. I have always taken interest in Ottoman cultural heritage. This time I got the opportunity to visit the tombs of Osman I and Orhan Gazi, the founders of the Ottoman State, in Bursa. I was very impressed.

You know an important war took place in Çanakkale?

Yes, I was also very impressed with that excursion. I know that the Gallipoli War is the brightest page of Turkish history filled with victory, glory and honour. I prayed for all your martyrs who rest in the cemetery.

What is your dream for the future?

I want Palestine to become a free country like Turkey one day. I hope that one day Palestine will become a developed, powerful and independent country like Turkey. The Palestinians are entitled to it.

What is your biggest dream for the world?

I wish peace all over the world. I want wars to come to an end, never to happen again, and children to live happily in a peaceful world. I hope all these wishes will come true.

In Turkey,  there was a coup attempt on July 15th. How did you feel on July 15th?

I was in Palestine. We followed the events on television and social media. The news did upset and sadden us, we were very worried. That nightmare lasted until the morning. We prayed a lot for Turkey.

For example, what do you think when July 15th is mentioned?

Those who staged the coup are enemies of nation and democracy. They are traitors for me. I do not like traitors because they do not like Turkey. They do not want Turkey to be a developed and free country. They do not want Turkey to help Palestine as well. They do not wish for Turkey to get better, become more developed, and peaceful.

You know Turkish culture and Turks now. Young people from 57 different countries visited Turkey with you for Turkish Summer School. How did you feel?

People from different countries and different cultures coming together is a tremendous wealth. We established new friendships, learned our differences, and discovered the common aspects. We realized how alike we are as people on various issues.

What are your thoughts about Turkey?

I love Turkey very much. For this reason I would like to live in Turkey and own a house. Especially in Bursa. I love Bursa very much.

What would you like to say about Yunus Emre Enstitüsü?

I would like to thank Turkish Republic and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan before Yunus Emre Enstitüsü. Yunus Emre Enstitüsü and universities hosted us very well throughout the Turkish Summer School program. Turkish people as a nation are very generous. I admire Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. God bless him. I always pray for him and for Turkey. President Erdoğan has revived the sensitivity Sultan Abdulhamid did show for Palestine. I hope that with the support of your President and efforts and support of all conscientious people, Palestine will be a free and independent country like Turkey one day. I wholeheartedly believe in it.

The letter Palestinian Muhammad Natsheh read in Turkish Summer School program, where he illustrates his dreams for the future:

"Selamun aleykum;

My name is Muhammad Natsheh, I am Palestinian. I have brought greetings to grandchildren of the Ottoman Empire from the first kiblah of Muslims. I am a voluntary ambassador. An ambassador carrying the love and affection of the Palestinian people. I am both joyful and sad.

I am joyful because I had a great time in Turkey for a month. I got to know you better. I admired you more as I knew you better. Moreover, I made many friends from different countries, I established new friendships, and got acquainted with various cultures. Turkish has become our common language. We spoke Turkish, we understood each other in Turkish, we had fun in Turkish. Thanks to you we had such happy moments which I will not forget.

Our joy is a bitter one. I am here right now, right before you. But my mind and heart are far away, at my beloved homeland, Jerusalem under occupation.

We know that we are in your prayers for years. Rest assured because Turkey is in the hearts and prayers of Palestinian people for years. We stayed awake and prayed for you in al-Aqsa Mosque on that night of horror for Turkey on July 15th. So we could safely wake up from that night full of terrors. Because your salvation is our salvation. I wish you could see Muslim people's joy with the news we received...

One year later, again in July, a short time ago we saw once again how you did not leave us alone in the face of events that occurred in al-Aqsa Mosque.

I saw that these two nations have been like sisters and brothers for hundreds of years. In the true sense! Sharing each other's joy and grief.

I dream and I believe that,

Twenty years later, Palestine will be free like Turkey, developed like Turkey, independent like Turkey, my second homeland

The name of Palestine will no longer be mentioned along with pain, tears and grief, but with hope and peace.

And I wish that twenty years later, God will allow us to host you as you host us today, in a Palestine where peace, love and justice prevail.


 Muhammad Natsheh”