12/1/2020 Minister of Youth and Sports Mehmet Muharrem Kasapoğlu has welcomed the national rhythmic gymnastics team, who won the medal in the three hoops and two pairs of clubs category at the 2020 European Championship in Rhythmic Gymnastics, which was held in the capital city of Ukraine, Kiev. Minister Kasapoğlu expressed that "You show the pure power of Turkish sport, youth and women in the most perfect way possible. You made your family, this great nation, and all of us filled with joy”. 

Minister Kasapoğlu has received President of Turkish Gymnastic Federation Suat Çelen, vice-president Emre Bağcı, national gymnasts Duygu Doğan, Azra Akıncı, Peri Berker, Nil Karabina, Eda Asar, Defne Alpaslan and İrem Ökçün; and also, General Coordinator of Rhythmic Gymnastics National Team Ülker Bağışlayan. Minister Kasapoğlu stated in his address that "Dear champions, this is your own ministry. We are extremely happy to be with you here. You are here as champions”. 

Ministry Kasapoğlu congratulated every gymnast and expressed that "You made history there and bring us this success for the first time of our history. We are very proud of each one of you. I also want to congratulate your trainers, your families, staff of our national team, and federation management.  Just like we say 'a Turkey with success all around’, our gymnasts showed us that we can be successful in every branch of sports, that we are a part of. You show the pure power of Turkish sport, youth and women in the most perfect way possible. You made your family, this great nation, and all of us filled with joy”. 

Minister Kasapoğlu has emphasised that they took every required step to make sportspeople and athletes not to be affected by pandemic; “Many tournament and championship had been delayed. We experienced a period that we had to stay at our homes. Many asked us whether this period would make any loss at the motivation or conditions of the sportspeople and athletes. But on the contrary, we persisted that ‘We would provide the best opportunities during this period and help our sportspeople and athletes to have maximum motivation at the end of this period’. We kept our cooperation at the highest level, and we tried to support everyone. We used every means possible, and support our sportspeople and athletes. And our sportspeople too, made the best out of this situation with their discipline, determination, and endurance. You are the future of this great nation. And we will always be here to support you in every way possible”. 

Minister Kasapoğlu also said that this success was not a coincidence at all. He added his address as follows:  

"Since the starting day of the contest during the pandemic, we managed to succeed at many different branches with happiness. At swimming Emre (Sakçı), at free-diving Fatma (Uruk), at modern pentathlon İlke (Özyüksel), and at rhythmic gymnastics; we are with you today. You raised our glorious flag back there. This is a great success, and you also showed us that, this success is not a coincidence at all. Hopefully, you will come up with success at the qualification championship that will be held in Bulgaria, in June 2021.  Having great youth setup, right training methods and facilities at international standards in our country, are the main reasons of these great news in the recent days. These success stories have been possible thanks to our President, and his policies that put sportspeople first and created a revolution in sport facilities in the last 18 years. The success of national gymnasts İbrahim Çolak, Ferhat Arıcan, Ahmet Önder and Nazlı Savranbaşı from last year, in term of both medal and Olympic quota, showed us this is not a coincidence”.  

Minister Kasapoğlu expressed his faith that Turkey will attend the Tokyo Summer Olympics that was delayed to 2021 with the maximum capacity possible in term of gymnastics; "Turkish sport is now on the agenda of whole world. We do not just see sports as some couple of branches. We saw that in the success stories from 2019, and we still continue to see this today. We witness the success stories from different branches, which we have not had any success before. The most exciting part in this, for me, is that; many different youngsters and children around Turkey will pattern themselves on you and your success. They will also step in the sports, thanks to you, and our future will be even brighter with your role models”.

Scholarships for National Athletes

Minister Kasapoğlu stated that, in order to carry out both education and sport collectively, they will grant scholarships to national athletes; "As a result of the agreements, we finalized with 52 different foundation universities, I want to give you the news of scholarships for our successful national athletes”.

Minister Kasapoğlu mentioned that the time left for sport is also shapes the education; "Because our athletes mainly focus on the branches, they cannot make themselves ready for the university entrance examinations. But with the help of this scholarship, they will have the opportunity to attend whatever department they want, and free of charge. We grant this scholarship to make them study in the departments they want to study, such as medicine, engineering, law, business management, or economy. Today, you deserve this scholarship, as the athletes with gold medal from European Championships. I wish you success in your education. We will also make all obstacle disappear in the future, in order to help you to carry out both education and sport collectively”. 

Minister Kasapoğlu also stated that they initiated the project to build a new gymnastic facility in Ankara, "We finished the building process of many modern education and camping facilities in İstanbul. Hopefully we will put them into service in the following days. We also initiated the required projects to build full-functioned gymnastic facility in Ankara. We wish it to be beneficial for all athletes. I congratulate all of our coaches, our federation president Suat Çelen and his team, and notably our precious gymnasts”.

National gymnasts also presented their appreciation to Ministry Kasapoğlu for his support and the opportunity of scholarship for them. 

Appreciation for the scholarship

President of Turkish Gymnastics Federation Suat Çelen expressed his gratitude for the scholarship to the national gymnasts, and thanked Minister Kasapoğlu; "Just before our visit, I asked our gymnasts their request. They told me they have two requests. And you have granted both of these requests. I am really grateful for this. One of them was facilities and the other one was about education”. 

At the end of the meeting, national gymnasts presented a tenpin and a signed national team jersey to Minister Kasapoğlu, and have a souvenir photo taken with him.