Ismet Inönü

The Turkish statesman and career military officer Ismet Inönü, b. Sept. 24, 1884, d. Dec. 25, 1973, became the principal lieutenant of Atatürk in the post-World War I struggle for Turkish Independence. Inönü was the Turkish representative at the Lausanne Conference, which overturned the wartime settlement and established the Turkish Republic in 1923. He was twice prime minister (1923-24, 1925-37) during Atatürk's presidency. As president (1938-50), Inönü kept Turkey neutral during World War II and prepared the country for democratic elections, which resulted (1950) in the removal of Inönü and his Republican People's party (CHP) from power. He then led the opposition to the Democratic party's regime until its overthrow by coup in 1960. Prime minister again from 1964 to 1965, Inönü was ousted as CHP leader in 1972.