Sunay, Cevdet (jĕvdĕtˈ sōnĪˈ) [key], 1900–1973, Turkish political leader and army officer, president of Turkey (1966–73). Educated at military schools, he served in World War I and the subsequent nationalist revolt. Rising through the ranks to become a full general in 1959, he held important military posts, was made commander in chief of the land forces in 1960, and then chief of staff. In 1966 he succeeded the ailing Cemal Gürsel as president of Turkey. He maintained his office despite increasing terrorist activity, student riots, and threatened coups. When his term expired in 1973 he was made a permanent senator.
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