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Victory in Europe Day

national and public holidays in France National Holiday in several European countries

France

Who observes V-E Day?

Country Name
Czech Republic Czech Republic Liberation Day Czech Republic
France France Victoire 1945
Slovakia Slovakia Day of victory over fascism
Ukraine Ukraine* Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation
* Not a public holiday

Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day or VE Day) is commemorated on 8 May. It is a national holiday in France known as 'Victoire 1945' or 'La fête de la victoire' and the day is also celebrated as a holiday in several other countries in Europe.

Victory in Europe Day marks 8 May 1945, on which day the World War II Allies formally accepted an unconditional surrender by the armed forces of Germany and the end of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich, after six years of the bloodiest conflict in human history.

On 30 April 1945, Hitler had committed suicide during the Battle for Berlin.

The surrender of Germany was authorized by his replacement, President of Germany, Karl Dönitz.

The administration headed up by Dönitz was known as the Flensburg government.

The act of military surrender was signed on 7 May 1945 in Reims, France, and 8 May 1945 in Berlin, Germany.

In 1995, the Early May Bank Holiday in the United Kingdom was moved to 8 May to mark the 50th anniversary of V-E Day.

In Russia and some other East European countries, this event is marked on Victory day on 9 May. It is a day later as the treaty was signed at 10.30pm in the evening in Reims, to come into effect at 11.01pm. As Russia is one hour ahead of Western Europe, this meant it was already 9 May in Russia.

Initially this day was celebrated on 9 May in Slovakia, but is now observed on 8 May.

In the Ukraine from 2015, 8 May was designated as a day of Remembrance and Reconciliation, but it is not a public holiday.

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