ANKARA, 22 December 2017: In order to pay homage to the school children and staff martyred in the brutal terrorist attack on Army Public School (APS) Peshawar on 16 December 2014, a solemn ceremony was held today at Keçiören, Ankara. 

It may be recalled that the people and leadership of Turkey extended spontaneous support to Pakistan in the face of the terrorist attack of 16 December 2014. Turkey declared a day of national mourning. Also, as a show of solidarity, Keçiören Municipality and Youth Wing members of the Justice and Development (AK) Party planted 144 trees, one for each shaheed, at the AK Party Memorial Forest in Keçiören district of Ankara. 

During the commemorative ceremony, the officers and families of the Embassy of Pakistan placed flowers at the memorial, followed by prayers for the departed souls.

In his remarks on the occasion, Ambassador of Pakistan Mr. Muhammad Syrus Sajjad Qazi recalled the black day of 16 December 2014 when 144 lives were ruthlessly taken away in the cowardly terrorist attack.  He appreciated the gesture by the people and leadership of Turkey as they were among the first in the world to reach out and express strong solidarity with Pakistan. “These 144 trees planted in the AK Party Memorial Forest will be a reminder of strong Turkish support and as a living example of Pakistan-Turkey brotherhood,” the Ambassador added