Independence Day in Eritrea in 2020

Independence Day in Eritrea in 2020
The flag of Eritrea was adopted on May 24th 1993. Image by Ronny K , via Pixabay
  How long until Independence Day?
This holiday next takes place in 45 days.
  Dates of Independence Day in Eritrea
2022 Eritrea Tue, May 24 Public Holiday
2020 Eritrea Sun, May 24 Public Holiday
2019 Eritrea Fri, May 24 Public Holiday
  Summary
The National Day of Eritrea marks independence from Ethiopia on May 24th 1993
  Local name
Maelti Natsinet

When is Eritrean Independence Day?

Independence Day is a public holiday observed in Eritrea on May 24th.

It is the National Day of Eritrea and marks the anniversary of two important events in Eritrea's recent history; the arrival of resistance fighters in the capital in 1991 and independence from Ethiopia in 1993.

History of Eritrean Independence Day

The history of this small country on the Horn of Africa is intertwined with its larger neighbour to the south, Ethiopia. 2,000 years ago, both countries were part of the Kingdom of Aksum. The region we identify as modern-day Eritrea emerged as Italian Eritrea in the last decades of the 19th century.

After Italy's defeat in the second world war, the country fell under British control. Planned independence came in 1952 with self-governance and a 10-year period of support from Ethiopia. In 1962 Ethiopia annulled the Eritrean parliament and formally annexed Eritrea.

The invasion was resisted by the Eritrean People's Liberation Front (ELF) and a 30-year armed struggle came to an end on May 24th 1991, when ELF forces entered the capital Asmara. 

The current flag of Eritrea was adopted on May 24th 1993. the motif of an olive branch encircled by a wreath represents Eritrean autonomy. The colours are based on the flag of the (ELF).

In internationally observed elections in 1993 99.8% of Eritreans voted to become independent, which became official on May 24th 1993.

Eritrea is considered one of the most underdeveloped countries in the world. Eritreans make up a large part of the immigrants seeking asylum in Europe, with the United Nations estimating that about 5,000 Eritreans flee the country monthly.

Despite this, Independence Day remains an important holiday and events take place in the week leading up to May 24th, so it is referred to as "Independence Week" (qinyat natsnet). The festivities are marked by carnivals, street performances, sporting competitions, cycling races, musical concerts, parades, tent parties and plenty of flag-waving and displays of patriotism.

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