Murat Yildirim was honored in Vatican

Turkish actor Murat Yildirim took center stage at the 11th Giuseppe Sciacca International Awards in Vatican!

On Saturday, September 11th 2012, and during a deeply moving and highly successful ceremony held at the Aula Magna of the University “Pontificia Università Urbaniana” in Vatican City (Rome), the International Guieseppe Sciacca Awards were presented to young people between 18 and 35 years of age for achievements in arts, culture, science and society. Special distinctions were also awarded to renowned personalities.

Popular Turkish actor Murat Yildirim, who was presented with the Cinema and Theatre Award , took center stage during the ceremony. The Jury of the Awards applauded Murat Yildirim for his exceptional talent and ethics. His nomination was fervently supported by the General Secretary of the Awards, Mrs. Vicky Bafataki, who made the following statement: “culture knows no borders and the getting together of young scientistis, artists and athletes without religious, political and social labels makes our world a better place and contributes to the friendship among nations. Murat is an amazing young actor, a wonderful man and for us he will be the “Ambassador” of the Awards in Turkey and its neighbouring countries”

Murat Yildirim with the General Secretary Vicky Bafataki

Murat Yildirim is the first Turk and the first Muslim to ever receive an International Giuseppe Sciacca Award.

Murat Yildirim arrived in Vatican esscorted by his wife, actress Burcin Terzioglu, and his manager Ayse Barim. When interviewed by foreign TV stations, he stated: “ It is with great honor that I accept the International Giuseppe Sciacca Award in Vatican. When I was informed of my nomination and, afterwards, of my receiving the award, I could hardly believe it. I am very happy and will do my best to carry out the dissemination of culture and volunteerism in my country, as well as of the important work of the Awards”.

Famous Italian actress Emmanuella Titocchia presents Murat Yildirim with his award

The actor was presented with the award by the famous Italian actress Emmanuella Titocchia, who came from Milan especially for this occasion, and the packed amphitheatre applauded him heartily.

Savino Zaba, Emmanuella Titocchia & Murat Yildirim

After the ceremony was over, visibily contented and satisfied by the warm welcome of the Awards authorities, Murat exchanged a few words and took photographs with young Cody McCasland, the Absolute Winner of this year’s awards, as well as with the rest of the winners.

Cody McCasland’s mother, Tina Dean, Cody McCasland, actor Murat Yildirim, General Secretary Vicky Bafataki

Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, as well as the President Rev. Professor Don Bruno Lima, congratulated him personally and extended their best wishes for every success in the future.

Murat Yildirim with cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos

On Sunday November 11th, in the morning, General Secretary Vicky Bafataki and General Coordinator for Foreign Affairs Dora Avgoulidou met with Murat Yildirim and Ayse Barim and talked extensively on various matters, and especially about their cooperation with the Giuseppe Sciacca Awards. Moreover, General Secretary Vicky Bafataki informed him of the recent film by the great Greek director Yiannis Smaragdis “God loves Caviar”– starring Catherine Deneuve, Sebastian Koch, John Cleese . Mr. Smaragdis is a Giuseppe Sciacca award recipient (2008) and currently the head of the Cinema and Theatre Division of the International Giuseppe Sciacca Awards.

Turkish actor Murat Yildirim, Vicky Bafataki, George Delis and the Olympic Medalist Pavlos Kontidis

The two men will soon meet so as to establish an acquaintanship and to discuss issues related to cinema and the International Awards. The General Secretary expressed her gratitude to Ayse Barim for supporting the effort from the beginning, as well as to the Press Officer for Turkey, Bahar Sapountzi – Aki. Afterwards, she gave Murat a beautiful olympic wreath made of silver and gold, and delivered a letter from his Greek fans, for whom he signed autographs.

On Sunday evening, the Turkish Ambassador Hakki Akil, along with other diplomats, welcomed Murat Yildirim, General Secreatry Vicky Bafataki and the General Coordinator for Foreign Affairs Dora Avgoulidou at the Turkish Embassy. The Turkish Ambassador congratulated Murat and thanked Mrs. Bafataki for Murat’s distinction. He also secured her promise that a more permanent cooperation between the Awards and Turkey will be sought, offering, at the same time, his full support.

Dora Avgoulidou, Reha Erus, Vicky Bafataki and Murat Yildirim

A highlight of the evening was their meeting with the Turkish correspondent of Hurriyet in Italy, Reha Erus. Full of enthusiasm regarding Murat’s award, Mr. Erus stated: “We will all work for the dissemination of the important work of the Awards in our country, and Murat will lead the effort. This is a great honor, and at first it was difficult for us, and particularly for Murat, to believe it”. Addressing the General Secretary, he said: “You have our deepest gratitude. You must know that your initiative touched us all and in Turkey you are hence considered a highly esteemed personality”.

Vicky Bafataki 
Edited by Theodora Darviri

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