|Biographical detail : ||An astute politician in Turkey’s rough game of politics.
In a career that spanned nearly half a century, Suleyman Demirel, became Turkey’s president after his many reprises as prime minister, and was the nation’s most remarkable political survivor.
He became the youngest prime minister in 1965 and then became president in 1993. Twice overthrown in coups, Suleyman Demirel never questioned the right of generals to play a leading role in Turkish politics. Having served seven times as Turkey’s prime minister, dominating the nation’s politics when the country struggled with violence, economic stagnation and military rule, Sleyman Demirel did “nudge Turkey towards economic modernity without cutting away its traditional roots.” Being nationalist he remained pivotal in domestic terms and a great influence in foreign affairs.
Astute politician and powerful orator Suleyman Demirel was renowned for his encyclopaedic knowledge of Turkey. It was said he could fly over any village and name its mayor.
Trained as an engineer, Suleyman Demirel oversaw many hydroelectric projects and became director general of the State Hydraulic Works at 31. He became known as “the king of dams.”
Suleyman Gundogdu Demirel — his last name means “iron hand” – was born in Islamkoy in South-Western of Turkey. The airport in the provincial capital, Isparta, was later named for him, as was the local university.
He passed away in Ankara, Turkey.