Armenia Independence Day: September 21
Armenia celebrates Independence Day as a public holiday.
In Armenia, Independence Day is an official holiday. It commemorates the restoration of the Republic of Armenia in September 21, 1991, after 70 years of Soviet rule.
History of Armenia Independence Day
In the early days of spring 1991, Mikhail Gorbachev made a final effort to avert the inescapable demise of the Soviet Union. On March 17, 1991 a referendum was held to preserve the Soviet Union. Almost 75 percent of the population was in favor to preserve of the Soviet Union. The Armenian republic, the Georgian, Moldovan, Latvian, Lithuanian, and Estonian, in unison they all rejected the referendum. On March 1, the Supreme Council of Armenia decided to hold its own referendum on independence six months later.
On August 23, 1990, the Supreme Council validated the Declaration of Independence, created by the new leaders of Armenia. The president of the Supreme Council at the time, Levon Ter-Petrossian, signed the document and Aram Manukian, a member of the parliament and of the ruling elite, read the declaration of independence aloud for the very first time.
It was quite obvious to the Armenian people and its leaders that the Soviet Union’s collapse is inevitable. The Soviet Union survived for only another 16 months after the referendum.
On September 21, Armenia held its referendum on independence. Almost 95 percent of the qualified voters took part, and more than 99 percent of these voters said “Yes” to the having an independent, free, and self-governing state.
Armenia Independence Day Traditions, Customs and Activities
Thousands of people and various entertainers celebrate Armenian Independence Day. The festivities began with the Armenian national anthem. Then well-known Armenian performers entertained the merrymakers. These performers sang traditional songs, while the dancers wore national costumes to celebrate the local traditions of Armenia.