Estonia Independence Day

Estonia Independence Day

February 24
On this day in 1918, Estonia issued a declaration of independence from the new Soviet Russia, which was followed by war with the Soviets to maintain Estonian liberty. On February 2, 1920, the war ended with the Tartu Peace Treaty which guaranteed Estonia's independence for all time. The Soviets went on to break this pact, however, and Estonia was under Soviet control for 75 years.
Following a strong independence movement during the late 1980s, Estonia officially declared its independence from the former U.S.S.R. on August 20, 1991, a day which is also commemorated with a public holiday. Latvia and Lithuania had also declared independence from the disintegrating Soviet empire. On September 6, independence was formally recognized by the former Soviet Union.
Estonians celebrate their Independence Day with a parade, church services, speeches, and concerts in the capital city, Tallinn.
CONTACTS:
Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Press and Information Department
Islandi valjak 1
Tallinn, 15049 Estonia
372-6-317-000; fax: 372-6-317-099
www.vm.ee/eng
SOURCES:
AnnivHol-2000, p. 31