Eesti Elu
National independence day
Eestlased Kanadas 15 Feb 2013 EL (Estonian Life)Eesti Elu
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Laas Leivat

Estonians have long ago established the national independence day of February 24th each year to be the most important holiday of the calendar year. The 1918 declaration of Estonian independence is celebrated as an official holiday, with the requisite parade, presidential reception, commemoration concert, the raising of the flag at every establishment and home.



Invitations to the Estonian presidential functions are eagerly anticipated by prominent community members. Internet sites, newspapers and TV are avidly studied for finding out who’s in/who’s out in society. National independence is undoubtedly part of the essence of being Estonian and the day is accorded the due solemnity history has bestowed upon it. It’s a national holiday that is meant to be inclusive, to be emotionally meaningful for people regardless of their ethnic heritage as long as Estonian is part of their self-identity.



Throughout the world “Independence Day” is a country’s annual event commemorating the anniversary of a nation’s assumption of independent statehood. This usually happens after ceasing to be in a group or part of another nation or state (in Estonia’s case, Russia in 1918), sometimes after the end of a military occupation (Soviet forces in 1991).



A declaration of independence is an assertion of the independence of an aspiring state (for Estonia on February 24, 1918). Such declarations are typically made without the consent of the associated state or union (for Estonia`s declared independence to be fully established a successful war of independence ensued).
 
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