Freedom Day (Belarus)

Freedom Day
Дзень Волі 2018.jpg
Freedom Day demonstration in front of the National Opera and Ballet of Belarus building in Minsk in 2018
Official name Дзень Волі
Observed by  Belarus, Belarusian diaspora
Date March 25
Frequency annual
Related to Declaration of independence by the Belarusian Democratic Republic in 1918

Freedom Day (Belarusian: Дзень Волі) is an unofficial holiday in Belarus, which is celebrated on March 25 to commemorate the declaration of independence by the Belarusian Democratic Republic on that date in 1918.

Freedom Day celebration rally held by the Belarusian opposition in 2007

The day has been celebrated as the Independence Day of Belarus by the Belarusian independence movement since the early 1920s. The day has been widely celebrated by the Belarusian diaspora.

In the United States, governors and US presidents, including Dwight Eisenhower Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, have traditionally issued official greetings to the Belarusian American community on the occasion of March 25.[1][2]

In today's Belarus, people and groups largely opposed to the current Belarusian government under president Alexander Lukashenko celebrate the holiday. The government does not recognize it for the stated reason that the Belarusian Democratic Republic was created by the Germans, who were occupying Belarus in 1918. Celebrations of the holiday are an annual occasion for anti-government protests.

See also