01 March 2022

Türkiye Built a New Grave for the Last Ottoman Diplomat Freed from FETO’s Captivity in South Africa

Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA) built a new grave for Mehmet Remzi Bey, our last Consul General to Johannesburg, who was taken prisoner by the British while on duty in South Africa and passed away in Johannesburg in 1916.

The opening ceremony held for the grave at Braamfontein Cemetery in Johannesburg was attended by Ayşegül Kandaş, Türkiye’s Ambassador to Pretoria; Mignon Juliette Gatcke, granddaughter of Mehmet Remzi Bey; Abdülkadir Abukan, TİKA’s Coordinator in South Africa; Embassy officials; representatives of Turkish institutions; many South African Muslims; and Salaamedia, a radio station that broadcasts for Muslims.

Speaking to an AA reporter, Ambassador Kandaş stated that the remains of Mehmet Remzi Bey were transferred to a mosque affiliated with the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization 11 years ago and that they buried Mehmet Remzi Bey back in his original grave at Braamfontein on January 18. She said, “A new grave was built in less than a month, thanks to the funding provided by TİKA.” Kandaş noted that the new grave was built faithfully to the original and made ready for the 106th anniversary of the death of Mehmet Remzi Bey.

Abdülkadir Abukan, TİKA’s Coordinator in South Africa, stressed that the original grave and headstone were destroyed during the transfer 11 years ago. He said, “Thus, once the remains of Mehmet Remzi Bey were retrieved, we quickly launched this project to build a new grave.” Abukan noted that the Arabic inscriptions on the destroyed headstone, which were illegible and often misread, were restored faithfully by Turkish calligrapher Refik Çarıkçı. He said, “Thus, the inscriptions on the stone were translated into Turkish in full for the first time.”

Praise be to Allah, who is Great and Glorious and is the only Eternal being, while all else is ephemeral.

After Him, blessings and peace be upon the Prophet, who is the descendant of Adnan (his sons).

Peace be also upon the family of the Prophet and his companions, with whom he had wise conversations.

Then, peace be upon Remzi, who was blissful at the time, yet unfortunately faced the catastrophe of death.

He passed away on the tenth Tuesday of Rabiʽ al-Thani.

He would give advice both to commoners and to nobles and would warn against the things to be feared and the reckoning.

He was the servant of Islam and the people and at source of knowledge, enlightenment, and abundance.

He was a Consul General in the Ottoman Empire and was the chief representative.

He strove with all his might to benefit people.

All Muslims pray to Allah to let him into heaven.

Historians who witnessed his virtue say that he was the symbol of religion and the greatest person in the region.


It is planned to complete the restoration of the back of the headstone, which is in English, within a month.

Mignon Juliette Gatcke, granddaughter of Mehmet Remzi Bey, expressed her gratitude to the Turkish authorities for their contribution to the moving of her grandfather’s body to his original grave and to the construction of the grave. Gatcke stated that her grandfather’s new grave looked very beautiful. She said, “I was especially impressed that such a beautiful grave was completed in 3 weeks.”

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