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What is a National Day?

04 July, 2012 20:59  Erin Erin

The World Each Nation National flags © Aania - Fotolia.com

A "National Day" is one of the highlights in a country's celebratory calendar as it recognizes the birth of a nation, either in history or symbolically. This nationhood can be symbolized by the date of independence, of becoming republic or a significant date for a patron saint or a ruler (birthday, accession, removal). Often a national holiday, celebrations range from fireworks to kites and dates can be fixed or movable.

Here are some upcoming celebrations from around the world.

USA

Date: July 4th

History

The United States of America celebrates Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, in celebration of the declaration of independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1776. It has been a paid federal holiday since 1938.

Customs

The day is associated with summer festivals of fireworks, parades, hot dogs, picnics, and the American classic of baseball. Neighborhoods, stores, and homes are decorated in red, white, and blue with the flag flying high. The soundtrack for the festivities include "The Star-Spangled Banner", "God Bless America", "America the Beautiful", "My Country, 'Tis of Thee", "This Land Is Your Land", "Stars and Stripes Forever", and, regionally, "Yankee Doodle" in northeastern states and "Dixie" in southern states. Americana at it's finest!

Where to Celebrate

Major fireworks displays are held in New York City, Chicago on Lake Michigan, San Diego over Mission Bay; Boston on the Charles River, St. Louis on the Mississippi River, San Francisco over the bay, and on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. In a act of international celebration, the annual Windsor-Detroit International Freedom Festival is celebrated in Detroit, Michigan and Windsor, Ontario. One of the world's largest fireworks displays over the Detroit River is a joint festival of fourth of July and Canada Day.

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Canada

Date: July 1st (unless that date falls on a Sunday, in which case July 2 is the statutory holiday).

History

Canada Day (French: Fête du Canada) is the national day of Canada. A federal statutory holiday, it marks the anniversary of the July 1, 1867, enactment of the British North America Act (today called the Constitution Act). This united three colonies into a single country called Canada within the British Empire. Originally called Dominion Day (French: Le Jour de la Confédération), the name was changed in 1982, the year the Canada Act was passed.

Customs

Frequently referred to as "Canada's birthday", most communities across the country host outdoor public events, such as parades, carnivals, festivals, barbecues, air and maritime shows, fireworks, and free musical concerts. There are also frequent citizenship ceremonies for new citizens. Queen Elizabeth II occasionally officiates the celebration.

Celebrating Canada Day can be a cause of friction in the province of Quebec, where the holiday is overshadowed by Quebec's National Holiday, on June 24. Canada Day also coincides with Quebec's Moving Day, when many fixed-lease apartment rental terms expire.

Where to Celebrate

Celebrations differ throughout the vast nation, however the capital, Ottawa, hosts the largest concerts and cultural displays on Parliament Hill. The governor general and prime minister typically officiate, though the monarch or another member of the Royal Family may also attend or take the governor general's place. Smaller events are mounted in other parks around the city and in Gatineau, Quebec.

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France

Date: July 14th

History

La Fête Nationale (known outside of France as Bastille Day) commemorates the Storming of the Bastille, which is considered the start of the French Revolution. The military parade in Paris has been held every year since 1880, except during World War II.

Customs

Parades, communal meals, dances, parties and fireworks mark the festivities. France's Tricolours (French national flag) are prominently on display throughout the country on buildings, clothing, and faces.

Where to Celebrate

The oldest and largest regular military parade in Europe is held on the morning of the 14th of July, on the Champs-Élysées in Paris. The President of the Republic attends the parade and often gives an interview to members of the press. The president also holds a garden party at the Palais de l'Elysée.

Bastille Day celebrations are also common around the world. Events are held in London, Liège, Budapest, Franschhoek, and all over the USA.

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India

Date: August 15th

History

The Independence Day of India commemorates its independence from British rule and its birth as a sovereign nation. At the stroke of midnight on August 15, 1947, Jawaharlal Nehru, read out the famous Tryst with destiny speech proclaiming India's independence. The day is a national holiday in all of India.

"Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we will redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially. At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom. A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends and when the soul of a nation, long suppressed, finds utterance.... We end today a period of ill fortune, and India discovers herself again."
- Jawaharlal Nehru (Speech on Indian Independence Day, 1947)

Customs

Flags are proudly hoisted above ceremonies while younger children appear in costume to represent their idols of the Independence Era. Kites dot the Delhi skies and parades, patriotic songs, and picnicking families celebrate.

Where to Celebrate

Flag hoisting ceremonies and cultural programs take place in all the state capitals. In the cities around the country the flag hoisting is carried out by a senior official of that organization. In New Delhi, the Prime Minister of India hoists the Indian flag on the ramparts of the historical site, Red Fort. This is telecast live, highlighting the achievements of the government during the past year. The Prime Minister also pays his tribute to leaders of the freedom struggle.

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Germany

Date: October 3rd

History

German Unity Day (German: Tag der Deutschen Einheit) celebrates the unification of West Germany and East Germany. A public holiday, this marks the official reunion of the two sides of Germany on October 3rd, 1990. German Unity Day is the only national holiday in Germany, as all other holidays are administered by the individual states.

Customs

Festivals celebrate the best of Germany with wurst (sausage), beers, speeches, and giant Ferris wheels to look over the nation.

To note the significance of unity, many mosques open to the general public. This is an initiative to stimulate contact between Muslims and non-Muslims and to emphasize the role that Muslims played in forming modern Germany.

Where to Celebrate

The Day of German Unity is celebrated each year with a ceremonial act and a citizens's festival (Bürgerfest). This changes location each year, although the largest cities of Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, and Frankfurt always provide great festivities. Berlin's Strasse des 17. Juni and area surrounding the Brandenburg Gate is a focal point for celebration. Munich's Oktoberfest runs until October 3rd to commemorate (if the Sunday in question falls on the first or second day of October).

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United Arab Emirates

Date: December 2nd

History

United Arab Emirates's National Day (Arabic: Al-Eid Al Watani) commemorates the UAE's independence from the United Kingdom. The seven emirates united to form the modern-day country on December 2nd, 1971. This unification is a result of the uniting of H.H. Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, H.H. Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, and his brothers.

Customs

People gather on the street and decorate the city, faces, and cars. Flags fly overhead and locals do a maseera, taking to the road in elaborately decorated cars.

Traditional sword dances such as the Ayyalah, Liwa, Haban, Harbiya and Mated take place in the center of the malls. In addition, all important monuments in the city are opened to public. Many Schools in the UAE celebrate National Day by holding an event in which children dress in cultural thoub and kandoora, and perform the youlah and traditional dance.

Where to Celebrate

Many families go out to the Corniche, gardens or parks to picnic and watch the massive fireworks display. Traditional dhow boat racing, camel racing, and Classic Car Competitions take place in Dubai.

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Australia

Date: January 26th

History

Australia Day is the date of the founding of Sydney, the first European settlement in Australia. This commemorates the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove in 1788 and the proclamation at that time of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of New Holland. It is an official public holiday in every state and territory of Australia.

Customs

Each year, Australia Day is marked by the presentation of the Australian of the Year Awards on Australia Day Eve. Community festivals, bbqs, sports competitions and citizenship ceremonies are also put on throughout the nation. Various music festivals are held like the Big Day Out, the Triple J Hottest 100, and the Australia Day Live Concert. Australia Day has become the biggest annual civic event in Australia.

Where to Celebrate

Sydney's harbor is filled with celebrations and races take place. Melbourne's events focus strongly on the celebration of multi-culturalism. The Perth Skyworks is the largest single event presented each Australia Day.

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Argentina

Date: May 25th

History

This holiday marks the date the Spanish viceroy was removed and replaced by the Primera Junta during the May Revolution. This is considered the first patriotic government of Argentina. July 9th marks the Declaration of Independence from Spain in 1816.

Customs

The Day of the First National Government (Spanish: Primer Gobierno Patrio) is a public holiday. People gather, feast, and hold public events. The flag is highly celebrated and white and blue abounds.

Where to Celebrate

The largest celebration is in the Buenos Aires's Cabildo. Massive celebrations were held during the 19th century, but were slowly forgotten. However, the Argentina Bicentennial held in 2010 raised again the public interest in the holiday, becoming the most attended public event in the history of Buenos Aires.

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United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is unusual in that it does not have a recognized national day. The Queen's Official Birthday (usually falling on a Saturday in the first half of June) is sometimes considered as a substitute. Various campaigns have championed a common holiday, but the closest thing is the four constituent nations of the UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) each have National Saints's days.

Where to Celebrate

Patron saints' days are usually low-key affairs. However, there are certain saints and celebrations that set each apart.

  • England (April 23rd) - St George's Day is a major feast and national holiday in England. People celebrate by wearing a red rose or the St George's Cross flag.
  • Scotland (November 30th) - St Andrew's Day (Scots: Saunt Andra's Day, Scottish Gaelic: Latha Naomh Anndra) is the official bank holiday of Scotland. Saint Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland and the Flag of Scotland (the Saltire or Saint Andrew's Cross) flies on every building.
  • Wales (March 1st) - The patron saint of Wales is Saint David and Saint David's Day (Welsh: Dydd Gwyl Dewi). Parades, concerts, and food festivals mark the event.
  • Northern Ireland (March 17th)- Saint Patrick's Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Pádraig, "the Day of the Festival of Patrick") is a cultural and religious holiday. The day is celebrated by church attendance, green attire, and parades.

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National Days Around the World

  • Afghanistan - 19 August (Independence from United Kingdom control over Afghan foreign affairs in 1919)
  • Albania - 28 November ("Dita e Pavaresise", declaration of independence from Ottoman rule in 1912)
  • Alderney, Guensey British Islands - 9 May (Liberation Day, the end of the German Occupation of the Channel Islands during World War II 1945)
  • Algeria - 1 November (start of the War of Independence in 1954)
  • American Samoa (US) - 17 April (Flag Day)
  • Andalusia, Spain - 28 February (Dia de Andalucia)
  • Andorra - 8 September (Our Lady of Meritxell Day, patron saint of Andorra)
  • Angola - 11 November (Independence from Portugal in 1975)
  • Anguilla, United Kingdom - 30 May (Anguilla Day; the beginning of the Anguillian Revolution in 1967)
  • Antigua and Barbuda - 1 November (Independence from the United Kingdom in 1981)
  • Aragon, Spain - 23 April (St George's Day, patron saint)
  • Armenia 28 May (Republic Day, independence from the Transcaucasian Democratic Federative Republic 1918 )
  • Aruba (Kingdom of the Netherlands) - 18 March (Flag Day: autonomy within the Netherlands in 1945)
  • Australia - 26 January (Australia Day, date of the founding of Sydney, the first European settlement in Australia, 1788 )
  • Austria - 26 October (The Neutrality Constitution of 1955)
  • Azerbaijan - 28 May (Republic Day, independence from the Transcaucasian Democratic Federative Republic 1918 )
  • Bahamas - 10 July (Independence from the United Kingdom in 1973)
  • Bahrain - 16 December (Accession Day for the late Amir Sh. Isa Bin Salman Al Khalifa)
  • Balochistan, (Pakistan) - 11 August (Independence from India in 1947)
  • Bangladesh - 26 March (Independence Day, declaration of independence from Pakistan in 1971); 16 December (Victory Day, the day the Bangladesh Liberation War ended in 1971)
  • Barbados - 30 November (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom in 1966)
  • Basque Country, Spain - 25 October (Day of the Basque Country) (official from 2011)
  • Belarus - 3 July (Independence Day, liberation of Minsk from German occupation by Soviet troops in 1944)
  • Belgium - 21 July (Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld takes the oath as first king of the Belgians in 1831)
  • Belize - 10 September, 21 September (Independence from the United Kingdom in 1981)
  • Benin - 1 August (Independence from France in 1960)
  • Bermuda, United Kingdom - 24 May (Originally Queen Victoria's birthday; now "Bermuda Day" to celebrate the islands' heritage and culture)
  • Bhutan - 17 December (Ugyen Wangchuck elected hereditary king 1907)
  • Bolivia - 6 August (Proclamation of Republic (independent from Spain) in 1825)
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina - 1 March (Dan nezavisnosti; Proclamation of independence from Yugoslavia in 1992), 25 November (Bosnian Republic Day, 25 November celebrate in Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina; Serbian Republic Day celebrate in Republika Srpska, 9 January)
  • Botswana -30 September (Independence from the United Kingdom in 1966)
  • Brazil - 7 September (Dia da Independência, declaration of independence from Portugal in 1822)
  • British Virgin Islands, United Kingdom - 1 July
  • Brunei - 23 February
  • Bulgaria - 3 March (Liberation Day, autonomy within Ottoman Empire 1878 )
  • Burkina Faso - 4 August (change of name from Upper Volta in 1984) (Independence Day, from France in 1960, is 5 August)
  • Burundi - 1 July (Independence from Belgium in 1962)
  • Cambodia - 9 November (Independence from France in 1953)
  • Cameroon - 20 May (National Day, creation of a unitary state 1972)
  • Canada - 1 July (Canada Day, Canada a confederation of four provinces 1867)
  • Catalonia (Spain) - 11 September (Catalonia loses its nominal independence and constitutions after the fall of Barcelona 1714)
  • Cayman Islands, United Kingdom - 1st Monday in July
  • Central African Republic - 1 December (autonomous territory within the French Community 1958 )
  • Chad - 11 August (Independence from France 1960)
  • Chile - 18 September (the first Government Junta is created 1810)
  • People's Republic of China - 1 October (Proclamation of People's Republic of China 1949)
  • Colombia - 20 July (Declaration of independence from Spain 1810)
  • Comoros - 6 July (Independence from France 1975)
  • Cook Islands - 4 August (Self-government in free association with New Zealand 1965)
  • Costa Rica - 15 September (Independence from Spain 1821)
  • Côte d'Ivoire - 7 August (Independence from France 1960)
  • Croatia - 25 June (Statehood Day, declaration of independence from Yugoslavia 1991)
  • Cuba - 1 January (Liberation Day, Fidel Castro takes power in 1959 (and Spanish rule ends 1899))
  • Cyprus - 1 October (Independence Day 1960)
  • Czech Republic - 28 October (Independence from Austria-Hungary (as Czechoslovakia) 1918 )
  • Democratic Republic of Congo - 30 June (Independence from Belgium in 1960)
  • Denmark (no official National Day) - 5 June (Constitution of 1849)
  • Djibouti - 27 June (Independence from France 1977)
  • Dominica -3 November (Independence from the United Kingdom 1978 (discovered by Christopher Columbus 1493))
  • Dominican Republic - 27 February (independence from Haiti 1844), 16 August (Restoration Day, independence from Spain 1865)
  • Ecuador - 10 August (Proclamation of independence from Spain 1809)
  • Egypt - 23 July (Revolution Day, the revolution of 1952), 6 October (Armed Forces Day, the beginning of the October War 1973)
  • El Salvador - 15 September (Independence from Spain 1821)
  • England, United Kingdom - 23 April (St George's Day, patron saint of England, not a bank holiday)
  • Eritrea - 24 May (Eritrean rebels enter the capital Asmara 1991; independence from Ethiopia 1993)
  • Estonia - 24 February (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Russia 1918 )
  • Ethiopia - 28 May (Downfall of the Derg Day, the Derg regime is defeated 1991)
  • Falkland Islands, United Kingdom - 14 June (Liberation Day, the end of the Falklands War 1982)
  • Faroe Islands (Denmark) - 29 July (Ólavsøka (Saint Olaf's death at the Battle of Stiklestad in 1030): opening of the Løgting (parliament) session)
  • Fiji - 10 October (Fiji Day, independence from United Kingdom 1970)
  • Finland - 6 December (Independence Day, declaration of independence from Russia 1917)
  • France - 14 July (Fête de la Fédération, 14 July 1790)
  • French Guyana (France) - 14 July (Fête de la Fédération), 20 December Abolition of slavery day
  • Gabon - 17 August (Independence from France 1960)
  • Gambia - 18 February (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1965)
  • Georgia - 26 May (Day of First Republic, declaration of independence from Russia 1918 )
  • Germany - 3 October (German Unity Day, unification of West Germany and East Germany 1990)
  • Ghana - 6 March (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1957)
  • Gibraltar, United Kingdom - 10 September (Gibraltar National Day, people of Gibraltar vote to reject Spanish sovereignty or association 1967)
  • Greece - 25 March (Declaration of independence from Ottoman Empire 1821), 28 October (Ohi Day, rejection of the Italian ultimatum 1940)
  • Greenland (Denmark) - 21 June (Longest Day of the Year) (The National Day was introduced in 1983 as one of the Home Rule's traditions and is thus one of several expressions of national identity, which is also reflected in the flag, clothing, national anthem and language)
  • Grenada - 7 February (Independence from United Kingdom 1974)
  • Guam (US) - 21 July (Liberation Day, Americans landing on Guam 1944, the beginning of the Battle of Guam (1944))
  • Guatemala - 15 September (Independence from Spain 1821)
  • Guinea - 3 April (Independence from France 1958 on 2 October)
  • Guinea-Bissau - 24 September (Declaration of independence from Portugal 1973)
  • Guyana - 23 February (Republic Day, also known as Mashramani, republic 1970)
  • Haiti - 1 January (Declaration of independence from France 1804)
  • Honduras - 15 September (Independence from Kingdom of Spain 1821)
  • Hong Kong - 1 July (Transfer of sovereignty to the PRC 1997) 1 October (National Day of the People's Republic of China)
  • Hungary - 15 March (1848 Revolution memorial day), 20 August (St. Stephen's day), 23 October (1956 Revolution memorial day)
  • Iceland - 17 June (National Day, founding of republic and dissolution of personal union with Denmark 1944)
  • India - 26 January (Republic Day, becoming the first republic in the British Commonwealth of Nations 1950), 15 August (Independence Day, from the British Empire 1947)
  • Indonesia - 17 August (Proclamation of Independence day, (Hari Proklamasi Kemerdekaan R.I.), from Japan and the Netherlands 1945)
  • Iran - 11 February (Victory of Islamic Revolution)
  • Iraq - 3 October (Independence from United Kingdom 1932)
  • Ireland - 17 March (St. Patrick's Day, patron saint of Ireland)
  • Isle of Man, British Islands - around 5 July (Tynwald Day, Tynwald (parliament) annual meeting)
  • Israel - around 14 May, according to Jewish calendar at 5 Iyar (Yom Ha'atzmaut, proclamation of independence from the British Mandate of Palestine 1948 )
  • Italy -25 April (Partisans liberate Genoa, Milan and Tourin from German troops in 1945), 2 June (Festa della Repubblica, Italy is voted a republic in 1946 - Giuseppe Garibaldi died on this date in 1882)
  • Jamaica - 1st Monday in August (Independence from the United Kingdom 6 August 1962)
  • Japan - 11 February (National Foundation Day, Jimmu, the first emperor, is crowned in year 660 BC)
  • Jersey, British Islands - 9 May (Liberation Day, the end of the German Occupation of the Channel Islands during World War II 1945)
  • Jordan - 25 May (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1946; the parliament of Transjordan makes Abdullah I of Jordan their king 1946)
  • Kazakhstan - 25 October (Republic Day, declared sovereign republic within the USSR 1990)
  • Kenya -12 December (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1963; Republic Day, (Jamhuri Day), 1964)
  • Kiribati - 12 July (Independence from the United Kingdom in 1979)
  • North Korea - 15 August (liberation from Japanese rule, 1945) 9 September (declaration of the North Korean State, 1948 )
  • South Korea - 15 August (both the liberation from Japanese rule, 1945 (Gwangbokjeol) and the declaration of the South Korean state, 1948 ), 3 October (Gaecheonjeol, the ancient Korea founded in 2333 BC), 1 March (declaration of independence of modern Korea and the March 1st movement, 1919)
  • Kurdistan - 21 March (Nawroz, Kurdish New Year celebrated on the spring equinox)
  • Kuwait - 25 February (National Day) (26 February is Liberation Day, from Iraq 1991)
  • Kyrgyzstan - 31 August (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the USSR in 1991)
  • Kosovo - 17 February (see 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence)
  • Laos - 2 December (National Day, people's republic declared 1975)
  • Latvia - 18 November (Declaration of independence from Russia 1918 )
  • Lebanon - 22 November (Independence from France 1943),25 May (Resistance and Liberation Day from Israel 2000)
  • Lesotho - 4 October (Independence from the United Kingdom 1966)
  • Liberia - 26 July (Proclamation of the Republic: independence from the United States 1847)
  • Libya - 17 February (The beginning of the Libyan civil war)
  • Liechtenstein - 15 August (The Hereditary Prince becomes Regent 2004)
  • Lithuania - 16 February (Lithuanian State Reestablishment Day, declaration of independence from Russia and Germany 1918 ); 6 July (Statehood Day, establishment of the medieval Lithuanian kingdom by Mindaugas in 1253.)
  • Luxembourg - 23 June (the Monarch's birthday)
  • Macau - 20 December (Transfer of sovereignty to the PRC 1999) 1 October (National Day of the People's Republic of China)
  • Macedonia - 8 September (Den na nezavisnosta or ??? ?? ????????????, declaration of independence from Yugoslavia 1991)
  • Madagascar - 26 June (Independence from France 1960)
  • Malawi -6 July (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1964; and Republic Day 1966)
  • Malaysia - 31 August (Hari Merdeka, independence (within the Commonwealth) from the United Kingdom 1957) and 16 September (Malaysia Day, the formation of Malaysia)
  • Maldives -1st of Rabi' al-awwal, the third month in the Islamic calendar
  • Mali - 22 September (Independence from the Mali Federation 1960)
  • Malta - 31 March (Freedom Day, withdrawal of British troops from Malta 1979), 7 June (Sette Giugno, bread riot of 1919 where 4 Maltese men died), 8 September (Victory Day, victory over the Ottoman Empire in the Great Siege of Malta 1565; Italian government publicly announced agreement to an armistice with the WWII Allies, therefore ending the attacks on Malta by the Italians 1943) 21 September (Independence Day, independence from the United Kingdom 1964), 13 December (Republic Day, republican constitution of 1974, therefore becoming a republic).
  • Marshall Islands - 1 May (Constitution Day, 1979)
  • Martinique, France - 14 July (Bastille Day), 22 May Abolition of slavery day (regional only)
  • Mauritania - 28 November (Independence Day, from France 1960)
  • Mauritius - 12 March (Independence Day, independence from the United Kingdom 1968, republic 1992)
  • Mayotte France - 14 July (Bastille Day), 27 April Abolition of slavery day (regional only)
  • Mexico - 16 September (Grito de Dolores, declaration of independence from Spain 1810)
  • Micronesia, Federated States - 3 November (Independence Day, from the US-administered UN Trusteeship 1979)
  • Minorca, Spain - 17 January (Alfonso III of Aragon took the island from Muslims, 1287)
  • Moldova - 27 August (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Soviet Union 1991)
  • Monaco - 19 November (the levée of Prince Albert II 2005)
  • Mongolia - 11 July (Naadam Holiday, declaration of independence from China 1921; however, Naadam is also celebrated in China by both Han Chinese and Mongols without political attachments)
  • Montenegro 13 July (recognised as independent at the Congress of Berlin 1878 ), 21 May (independence on the referendum in 2006)
  • Montserrat, United Kingdom - 2nd Saturday in June
  • Morocco - 2 March (Independence from France 1956)
  • Mozambique - 25 June (Independence from Portugal 1975)
  • Myanmar - 10th day following the full moon of the month of Tazaungmone (beginning of Student led protests against British colonial government in 1920), in late November or December
  • Namibia - 21 March (Independence Day, from South African mandate 1990)
  • Nauru - 31 January (Independence from the Australia, NZ, and UK-administered UN trusteeship 1968 )
  • Nepal - 18 February (Martyr's Day), 28 May (Nepal a federal republic 2008, earlier the king's birthday)
  • Netherlands (country) - 30 April (Queensday, Queen Juliana's birthday), 5 May (Liberation Day, from Nazi Germany in 1945)
  • Kingdom of the Netherlands - 15 December (Kingdom day, signing of the Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands 1954)
  • New Zealand - 6 February (Waitangi Day, signing of the Treaty of Waitangi 1840)
  • Nicaragua - 15 September (Independence from Spain 1821)
  • Niger - 18 December (Republic Day, autonomous state within the French Community 1958 )
  • Nigeria - 1 October (Independence Day, from United Kingdom 1960 (and republic 1963)), 29 May (Democracy Day, return of democracy 1999)
  • Niue - 19 October
  • Norfolk Island, Australia - 8 June (second) settlement established (everybody from the Pitcairn Islands))
  • Northern Ireland, United Kingdom - 17 March (St. Patrick's Day), 12 July (Battle of the Boyne Day)
  • Northern Mariana Islands, United States - 8 January (Commonwealth Day, the constitutional government takes office 1978 )
  • Norway - 17 May (Constitution Day, the signing of the first Norwegian Constitution in Eidsvoll 1814)
  • Oman - 18 November (birthday of Sultan Qaboos bin Said al Said of Oman)
  • Pakistan - 23 March (Pakistan Day, the Pakistan resolution passed in Lahore in 1940), 14 August (Independence Day, independence from the British Indian Empire in 1947)
  • Palau - 9 July (Constitution Day, the world's first nuclear-free constitution 1981; "nuclear-free" dropped in 1994 in order to become an associated state to the United States in the Compact of Free Association)
  • Palestine - 15 November
  • Panama - 3 November (Separation Day, declaration of independence from Colombia 1903)
  • Papua New Guinea - 16 September (Independence from Australia in 1975)
  • Paraguay - 14 May (Independence Day (Día de Independencia), declaration of independence from Spain in 1811)
  • Peru - 28 July (Declaration of independence from Spain in 1821)
  • Philippines - 12 June (Araw ng Kalayaan), Philippine Declaration of Independence, from Spain in 1898
  • Pitcairn Islands, United Kingdom - 2nd Saturday in June
  • Poland - 3 May (S'wie;to Konstytucji 3 Maja, Constitution Day, 1791), 11 November, (S'wie;to Niepodleg?os'ci, Independence Day, restoration of independence from Austro-Hungary, Prussia, and Russia in 1918 )
  • Portugal - 10 June (Portugal Day, "Day of Camões, Portugal, and the Portuguese Communities", National Poet Luís de Camões dies in 1580)
  • Puerto Rico - 25 July (Constitution Day, establishment of Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 1952. Formerly Invasion Day:1898 )
  • Qatar - 18 December (Official National Day Qatar National Day; the assumption of power of Sheikh Jassem bin Mohamed al-Thani in 1878 )
  • Québec, Canada - 24 June (National Holiday, since 1977; also celebration of John the Baptist, patron saint of French Canadians, since 1834)
  • Republic of China - 10 October (Anniversary of the Wuchang Uprising)
  • Republic of the Congo - 15 August (Independence from France in 1960)
  • Romania - 1 December (Union Day, unification with Transylvania 1918 )
  • Russian Federation - 12 June - Russia Day, declaration of sovereignty in 1990, (law priority over Soviet Union laws)
  • Rwanda - 1 July (Independence from Belgium in 1962)
  • Saba (Kingdom of the Netherlands) - 3 December
  • Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, United Kingdom - 2nd Saturday in June
  • St Kitts and Nevis - 19 September (Independence from the United Kingdom 1983)
  • St Lucia - 13 December (National Day, independence from United Kingdom 1979; the saint's day)
  • St. Maarten (Kingdom of the Netherlands) - 11 November
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - 27 October (Independence Day, from United Kingdom 1979)
  • Samoa - 1 June
  • San Marino - 3 September (Independence from the Roman Empire in year 301 (traditional date))
  • São Tomé and Príncipe - 12 July (Independence from Portugal 1975)
  • Sardinia, Italy - 28 April (Sa die de sa Sardinia - Sardinia's Day - celebrating the uprising of April 28, 1794)
  • Sark, Guernsey, British Islands - 9 May (Liberation Day on 10 May, the end of the German Occupation of the Channel Islands during World War II 1945)
  • Saudi Arabia - 23 September (unification of the kingdoms Nejd and Hejaz 1932)
  • Scotland, United Kingdom - 30 November (St. Andrew's Day, patron saint of Scotland, now a bank holiday)
  • Senegal - 4 April (Independence from France 1960)
  • Serbia - 15 February (The beginning of the Serbian revolution against Ottoman rule 1804, first constitution 1835)
  • Seychelles - 18 June (National Day)
  • Sierra Leone - 27 April (Republic Day, independence from the United Kingdom 1961)
  • Singapore - 9 August (National Day), Gained independence from Malaysia 1965)
  • Slovakia - 29 August (Slovak National Uprising Day, start of a Slovak uprising against Nazi Germany 1944), 1 September (Constitution Day, independence from Czechoslovakia 1993)
  • Slovenia - 25 June ((Statehood Day), declaration of independence from Yugoslavia 1991)
  • Solomon Islands - 7 July (Independence Day, from United Kingdom 1978 )
  • Somalia - 1 July (Foundation of the Republic, from Italy and the formation of Somali Republic 1960)
  • South Africa - 27 April (first democratic general election 1994)
  • South Sudan - 9 July (Independence Day, from Sudan 2011)
  • South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, United Kingdom - 2nd Saturday in June
  • Spain - 12 October (Fiesta Nacional de España, Columbus discovery of America 1492)
  • Sri Lanka - 4 February (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1948, still under name of Ceylon)
  • Sudan - 1 January (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom and the Egyptian Republic 1956)
  • Suriname - 25 November (Independence Day, from the Netherlands 1975)
  • Swaziland - 6 September (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1968 )
  • Sweden - 6 June (Gustav Vasa is elected King of Sweden 1523, the constitutions of 1809 and 1974)
  • Switzerland - 1 August (National Day, alliance against the Holy Roman Empire 1291, between Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden)
  • Syria - 17 April (Evacuation Day, from France 1946), 8 March (Independence Day from The Ottoman Empire and declaration of The Arab Kingdom of Syria, the first modern Arab state in 1920)
  • Tajikistan - 9 September (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Soviet Union 1991)
  • Tanzania - 9 December (Independence Day 1961)
  • Tatarstan - 30 August (Declaration of independence from the RSFSR 1990)
  • Thailand - 5 December (birthday of King Bhumibol Adulyadej)
  • Togo - 27 April (Independence from the French-administered UN trusteeship 1960)
  • Tonga - 4 June (Emancipation Day abolition of serfdom 1862, independence from the United Kingdom 1970)
  • Transnistria - 2 September (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Moldova 1990)
  • Trinidad and Tobago - 31 August (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1962)
  • Tunisia - 20 March (Declaration of independence from France 1956)
  • Turkey - 29 October (Republic Day (Cumhuriyet Bayram?), republican constitution 1923)
  • Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus - 15 November (Declaration of independence from the Cyprus 1983)
  • Turkmenistan - 27 October (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Soviet Union 1991)
  • Turks and Caicos Islands, United Kingdom - 30 August (Constitution Day, 1976)
  • Tuvalu - 1 October (Independence Day, independence from the Gilbert Islands (Kiribati) 1975 and the United Kingdom 1978 )
  • United Arab Emirates - 2 December (National Day, formation of federation of seven emirates and independence from the United Kingdom 1971)
  • Uganda - 9 October (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom 1962, also a republic)
  • Ukraine -24 August (Independence from the Soviet Union 1991)
  • United States of America - 4 July (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain 1776)Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. Independence Day is commonly associated with fireworks, parades, barbecues, carnivals, fairs, picnics, concerts, baseball games, family reunions, and political speeches and ceremonies, in addition to various other public and private events celebrating the history, government, and traditions of the United States. Independence Day is the national day of the United States
  • United States Virgin Islands (US) - 31 March (Transfer Day, transfer of the islands from Denmark to the United States 1917)
  • Uruguay - 25 August (Día de la Independencia, declaration of independence from Portugal 1825)
  • Uzbekistan - 1 September (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the Soviet Union 1991)
  • Vanuatu - 30 July (Independence Day, from the United Kingdom and France 1980)
  • Vatican City - 24 April (Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger is inaugurated as the 265th Pope 2005)
  • Venezuela - 5 July (Independence Day, declaration of independence from Spain 1811)
  • Vietnam - 2 September (National Day, declaration of independence from France and Japan 1945)
  • Wales, United Kingdom - 1 March (St. David's Day, patron saint)
  • Yemen - 22 May (Unity Day/National Day, North and South Yemen are unified as the Republic of Yemen 1990)
  • Zambia - 24 October (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the United Kingdom 1964)
  • Zimbabwe - 18 April (Independence Day, declaration of independence from the United Kingdom 1980; it had previously declared independence as Rhodesia in 1965)

   



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