Table of Contents

  1. Arrival of the Ambassador Designate
  2. Visit to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  3. Presentation of the Letters of Credence
  4. Wreath – Laying Ceremony at Atatürk’s Mausoleum
  5. Official Visits

Arrival of the Ambassador Designate

The Ambassador Designate will be greeted at the airport by a member of the Protocol Department (hereafter referred to as the Protocol Officer) if the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is officially informed of the date of arrival. Upon completion of arrival formalities the Protocol Officer will accompany the Ambassador to his/her car.

If the Ambassador Designate is resident in another capital and has no Embassy residence in Ankara; he/she will be accompanied by the Protocol Officer to his/her hotel. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will provide the transportation required.

The Protocol Department would be grateful if the Ambassador Designate arrives during the working hours as this would greatly facilitate the welcoming procedure.

If the Ambassador Designate arrives in Ankara by car, he/she will not be met upon arrival.

The request for appointments from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs may be addressed by the Ambassador to the Protocol Officer on this occasion.

Visit to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

The Ambassador Designate will, upon appointments, visit the Director General of Protocol (Chief of Protocol) and the Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs. The Ambassador Designate will present copies of his/her Letters of Credence and the Letters of Recall of his/her predecessor to the Chief of Protocol.

The Chief of Protocol will inform the Ambassador Designate about the ceremony of the Presentation of the Letters of Credence.

Presentation of the Letters of Credence

On the day assigned for the presentation of credentials, to escort the Ambassador to the Presidential Palace, the Protocol Officer will arrive at the residence of the Ambassador at a time previously communicated.

While the Ambassador, accompanied by the Protocol Officer takes his/her seat in the car provided for the ceremony, his/her staff will take their places in the other cars which will take them to the Presidential Palace. The motorcade formed thus will be escorted by a police car. Upon request, cars of the Embassy can be included in the motorcade.

A total number of four career diplomats and/or military attachés of the Embassy can attend the ceremony.

The spouse of the Ambassador may also attend the ceremony. If attended, he/she will follow the Ambassador in a separate car provided by the Protocol Department.

Upon arrival at the Presidential Palace, the Ambassador will be met by an A.D.C. of the President (Fig . 1). After shaking hands with the A.D.C. who will .be introduced by the Protocol Officer (Position No.1), the Ambassador proceeds towards the point which has been marked on the main staircase (Position No. 2), together with the A.D.C. on his/her right and the Protocol Officer on his/her left. They stop at this point and the National Anthems of the country represented by the Ambassador and of Turkey are played by the 'Band of the Presidential Guard Regiment. The Ambassador then proceeds to the Band which is on the right side of the Guard of Honour and from thereon advances slowly to inspect the Guard of Honour (Position No.3). During the inspection, while the Guard of Honour is on the left and the A.D.C. on the right, the Protocol Officer follows the Ambassador one step behind on his/her left. At the termination of the inspection, the Ambassador turns back to enter the building and before climbing up the stairs, stops at the marked point and turns to salute the Guard of Honour in the following words in Turkish: "Merhaba Asker"'(Salute Soldier) to which the Guards will reciprocate: "Sağol" (Thanks) (Position No.4). The staff of the Embassy observes the ceremony from the spot reserved for them.

Following the salutation, the Chief of Protocol greets the Ambassador Designate and escorts him/her to the waiting room. The Ambassador and his/her staff will take their places in the waiting room adjacent to the Reception Hall (Fig. 2).

Then the Chief of Protocol enters the Reception Hall and announces to the President the arrival of the Ambassador.

In the Reception Hall, one step behind the President, the Minister/Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs takes his/her place on the right, the Chief of Cabinet of the President on the left and the Chief A.D.C. at the center. An Adviser, the Commander of the Presidential Guard Regiment and an A.D.C. take their places on the right side of the Hall and the Chief of Protocol at the entrance.

Following the announcement of his/her name and title by the Chief of Protocol, the Ambassador enters the Hall and the staff members of the Embassy follow the Ambassador in order of seniority, stop behind the Ambassador by the carpet. The spouse of the Ambassador proceeds the staff members. The Ambassador proceeds towards the President and stops at a distance indicated by a metal plate. The Ambassador presents to the President his/her Letters of Credence and the Letters of Recall of his/her predecessor (if not yet presented). No speeches will be exchanged during the audience.

Having handed over the Letters, the Ambassador asks permission to introduce his/her spouse and the members of his/her staff and turns sideways facing the Press. Introduction takes place in the order of seniority, beginning with the spouse.

The president, accompanied by the Minister/Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ambassador, will then proceed to take their seats on the armchairs previously arranged in the Reception Hall, the President being in the middle, the Ambassador on his right and the Minister/Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs on his left. The spouse of the Ambassador will be seated on the right of the Ambassador. The Chief of Protocol, the staff of the President and the staff of the Ambassador will stand at indicated places behind the armchairs and a group photograph will be taken.

The President, accompanied by the Minister/Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs will invite the Ambassador to his Office for a brief conversation, while the staff as well as the spouse of the Ambassador will be led to the waiting room.

Upon the termination of the audience, the Ambassador will ask the President’s permission to leave and proceeds to the waiting room where he/she will be congratulated by the Chief of Protocol, his/her staff and other officers and a toast will be offered by the Chief of Protocol.

The Ambassador bids farewell to the Chief of Protocol and accompanied by the Protocol Officer and his/her staff, proceeds to the main entrance.

The motorcade, escorted by the police car leaves the Presidential Palace for the residence of the Ambassador.

Upon completion of the ceremony, as the motorcade returns, if attended, the spouse of the Ambassador will take a seat in the same car with the Ambassador.

The dress for the ceremony is dark suit or national dress.

In inclement weather, the ceremony is held at the Reception Hall entrance as indicated in Fig. 3.

Wreath – Laying Ceremony at Atatürk’s Mausoleum

The same afternoon, or if not possible, the next day, the Ambassador lays a wreath at Atatürk's Mausoleum at a time organized by the Protocol Department. Following the wreath-Laying and the observance of one minute's silence, the Ambassador signs the Book of Honour and visits the Atatürk Museum. The members of the Embassy may accompany the Ambassador. The spouse of the Ambassador may also attend the ceremony.

Following the ceremony, visit to the Independence War Museum will take place. The Ambassador may request the long or short tour of the Museum.

The wreath should be sent by the Embassy and be ready at the Mausoleum at least one hour before the ceremony commences, bearing a ribbon with the name of his/her country and the title of the Ambassador, in Turkish. (“……… Büyükelçisi”). The wreath should measure 80 cm in diameter from periphery and be without a pedestal.

The dress is dark suit or national dress.

Details of the ceremony can be found in Fig. 4.

Official Visits

Upon the request of the Ambassador, the Protocol Department will arrange appointments for him/her to call on the Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. Courtesy calls to the Prime Minister and the Cabinet Ministers are usually arranged in combination with needs and requests for official calls.

The Charg dAffaires will be met at the airport by a Protocol Officer and upon the completion of arrival formalities he/she will be accompanied to his/her car.

Upon his/her request, the Charg dAffaires will call on the Chief of Protocol to hand a certified copy of his Letters of Cabinet and ask for an appointment to be received by the Minister of Foreign Affairs. He/she will then visit the Minister/Undersecretary or the Deputy Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs at the time fixed and present the Letters of Cabinet. After that, the Charg dAffaires will also pay any other visits advised by the Protocol Department.

When the Ambassador is leaving definitely, he/she may ask for a farewell audience with the President of the Republic through the Protocol Department. If the Ambassador is in possession of his Letters of Recall, he/she will present them to the President personally during this final audience. Otherwise, his/her Letters of Recall are presented by his/her successor together with his/her own Letters of Credence.

The dress for this audience is dark suit.

The Ambassador may also pay farewell visits to the Speaker of the Turkish Grand National Assembly, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs by appointments arranged by the Protocol Department, upon request.

If the time of departure is officially communicated to the Protocol Department, a Protocol Officer will be present at the airport, to see the Ambassador off.