Each 3 July is officially “Independence Day” in Belarus. However, there is controversy surrounding the choice of this date by Belarus president Alexander Lukashenko.
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The date of Independence Day looks back to the liberation of Minsk from the Nazis back in 1944. That, of course, brought Belarus back under the control of the USSR.
Some have suggested that a date in connection with the 1991 declaration of independence, from the USSR, would be more appropriate. Such a date could be 27 July, when independence was declared from the USSR, or possibly 25 August, when independence was passed into law.
Still others suggest 25 March would be the best date for Independence Day in Belarus. This date is already celebrated by many as “Freedom Day” to commemorate the first independence from Russia in 1918.
But regardless of the controversy, there is a military parade every 3 July in Belarus to celebrate independence. You will also find a major fireworks display in Minsk, numerous concerts in the town of Gomel, and family gatherings all over the country.