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The 3rd Airport in İstanbul was opened with the opening speech of President and Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chair Recep Tayyip Erdoğan yesterday (October 29).
In his speech at the opening ceremony, Erdoğan announced the name of the 3rd Airport by saying, "I wish from Allah that the İstanbul Airport be beneficial to the whole world, our region and our country".
Minister of Transportation, Maritime Affairs and Communications of the time Ahmet Arslan made a statement on June 22, 2018 and stated that "the new airport should be called Recep Tayyip Erdoğan" and sparked a debate about the prospective name of the airport.
Media outlets close to the AKP also suggested names such as "Abdülhamit Han Airport" (referring to the Ottoman Sultan Abdul Hamid II), "Ottoman Airport" and "Conqueror 1453 Airport" (referring to the take-over of Constantinople/ İstanbul by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror).
Erdoğan made the following statement about the choice of name:
"Istanbul is not only our biggest city, but it is also the most valuable brand of our country. For that reason, we have given the name of 'İstanbul' to this great work that we have constructed in this priceless city."
Erdoğan also stated that İstanbul Atatürk Airport, which will be closed to commercial passenger flights after İstanbul Airport has started to operate in full capacity, will retain its quality of being an airport as well as its name. (HK/SD)
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