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Alaiye's Becoming Alanya

Old Castle and environment from east of the AlanyaAs Great Ataturk travelled in Turkey he never used to forget to visit Antalya. Citizens of Alaiye heard that Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was going to come to visit Aspendos in 9 March 1930. A committee consisting of Nazmi Dogan, Huseyin Gucuoglu, Mehmet Ali Kemaloglu, Fuat Salur, Sukru Ulusoy and Zihni Acikalin with the leading of Hamdullah Emin Pasha (a member of Ottoman Assembly) came to Antalya to welcome Ataturk. The committee headed by Hamdullah Emin Pasha invited Ataturk to Aiaiye. Ataturk said that he would visit Aiaiye in another tour. Ahmet Inan who came with him there talked about Aiaiye whenever he found an opportunity. Because of his father's civil servant post he spent his childhood in Aiaiye. He played an important role in the communication between Ataturk and the citizens of Aiaiye. In 1931 Ataturk came to Antalya. After a little trip in Antalya and its district, he set off towards Silifke. When he came to Aiaiye he remembered the promises he gave to Prof. Ahmet Inan and to the citizens of Aiaiye in Aspendos. He felt touched when he saw green banana and orange gardens, snow white houses of Aiaiye, Sultan Alaaddin Keykubat's castle, tower and shipyard. The members of a committee said this: "Why don't you have a villa in the winter capital of Seljuk Empire?" Meanwhile citizens of Aiaiye were coming with boats towards Ataturk's steamship named Ege. A trip to Aiaiye wasn't among the plans of Ataturk and the steamship. Mayor of Aiaiye, Huseyin Hacikadiroglu, sent a telegram to Ataturk to express their love, respect and gratitude. In those days telegrams, which were sent to ships, were transmitted over Canakkale. Because of this process the word "Aiaiye" transmitted as "Alanya". While the telegram was read Prof Afet Inan noticed this. After he gave a historical explanation to Ataturk, Ataturk ordered to change the name Alaiye as Alanya. After some correspondences in July 1933 this change was published in official gazette and Alaiye became Alanya.

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