Oberon, Sydney Australia - Tuesday, 20 February - 8:32pm OberonAustralia.com

Sister Cities

Eceabat in Turkey is Oberon’s Sister City and for a very special reason.

Back in 2004, Oberon resident Peter Stokes was working alongside a gentleman by the name of Mustafa Delkic when they discovered that both their great uncles fought in World War One and are both buried at Gallipoli, and that they were fighting on opposite sides in the same locality during the war.

With this amazing find, Peter moved to Oberon and became very involved in the RSL Sub Branch and invited Mustafa to come to Oberon. In 2005 Mustafa laid a wreath on behalf of the Turkish Embassy at the Anzac Day service in Oberon.

With a very special bond in place, Peter approached the RSL Sub Branch about the possibility of forming a sister city relationship with Eceabat in Turkey, whose council area includes the Gallipoli Peninsular.

Members of the Oberon Sub Branch, President Bill Wilcox and Secretary Neville Stapleton, along with Peter and Mustafa took their proposal of forming a sister city relationship to Oberon Council, and after a long process, Oberon and Eceabat became sister cities in 2006.

In 2007 the Mayor of Eceabat Adam Edger travelled to Australia to attend the Oberon Anzac Day Service, and in 2008 Bill Wilcox and Oberon Mayor the late Bob Hooper returned a visit to Eceabat to attend the Anzac Service.

The forming of the sister city relationship also formed a bond between Oberon Council and Auburn City Council. Due to the fact Auburn has a large Turkish community, Auburn Council was very helpful is translating the correspondence between Eceabat and Oberon. Oberon Council and Auburn City Council are now Sister Council Cities.

The strong bond between Eceabat and Oberon and also Turkey and Australia was further strengthened by the erecting of a large stone monument at the Oberon Sub Branch which bore the moving words of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the first president of Turkey. His historic words comforted the mothers of lost soldiers, saying they are at rest in the soil of a friendly country.

In 2011 the Mayor of Eceabat Kemal Dokuz attended the Anzac Day service in Oberon and viewed the stone monument.

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