Locals in Boris Johnson’s ancestral hometown in Turkey ‘proud’

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The premiership triumph of Brexit hardliner Boris Johnson, whose family roots reach back to an Ottoman interior minister, has made his fellow Turkish townsmen from the northern province of Çankırı quite “proud,” a Turkish citizen residing in the province has told Demirören News Agency.

“This family has members that can lead the world. This honored us and made us proud,” said Mustafa Bal, a resident of the village of Kalfat in the Orta district of Çankırı.

Bal also said that amongst the Kalfat residents, Johnson’s family is called “Sarıoğlangiller,” meaning the sons of the blonde ones.

Boris Johnson’s blondness comes from that family,” he added.

Johnson was actually invited to Kalfat when he was holding the post of London mayor, Bal said. He also added that the residents of Kalfat want to have Johnson over to the village during his premiership as well.

Another resident, Selim Barışkan, congratulated Johnson and said the residents are expecting help from him to solve the village’s problems.

The village head, Bayram Tavukçu, congratulated Johnson and expressed the residents’ wish to travel to the United Kingdom and felicitate his premiership, face-to-face.

Johnson’s great-grandfather, Ali Kemal, was an Ottoman journalist and politician. He served for three months as the interior minister in the government of Damat Ferit Pasha. He also held the post of education minister.

Ali Kemal’s father, Hadji Ahmet Rıza Efendi was born in Çankırı’s Kalfat village, in 1813.

An opponent of the 1919-1923 Turkish War of Independence, Kemal lived in exile in Europe.

Johnson won the contest to lead Britain’s governing Conservative Party on July 23. He will become the country’s next prime minister, tasked with fulfilling his promise to lead the United Kingdom out of the European Union.

Johnson resoundingly defeated rival Jeremy Hunt, winning two-thirds of 160,000 votes from Conservative members. He will be installed as prime minister in a formal handover from Theresa May on July 24.

Hurriyet Daily News

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