Martyrs Day in Madagascar in 2020

Martyrs Day in Madagascar in 2020
  How long until Martyrs Day?
This holiday next takes place in 195 days.
  Dates of Martyrs Day in Madagascar
2021 Madagascar Mon, Mar 29 National Holiday
2020 Madagascar Sun, Mar 29 National Holiday
2019 Madagascar Fri, Mar 29 National Holiday
2018 Madagascar Thu, Mar 29 National Holiday
  Summary
A public holiday dedicated to those who died in 1947 during the revolt against the French.

When is Madagascar Martyrs' Day?

Martyrs' Day is a public holiday in Madagascar, observed on 29th March.

Also known as Commemoration Day or Insurrection Day, this holiday memorializes those who died in the Revolt of 1947 against the French.

History of Martyrs' Day

In the early 19th century, Madagascar was united and ruled as the Kingdom of Madagascar. Seen as a key strategic location by both France and Britain, France invaded Madagascar in 1883, eventually removing the monarchy and quashing resistance and imposing colonial rule in 1897.

During the Second World War, the Vichy government of France unsuccessfully fought the British for the control of Madagascar. The actions of the French after the war galvanised the growing call for independence, leading to the Malagasy Uprising of 1947.

With the failure of the nationalist political movement to convince the French to accept independence, the nationalists launched a series of attacks on the evening of 29 March 1947. Though the rebels were armed only with spears against the French soldiers, the uprising spread and escalated across the island in the following months.

In May 1947, the arrival of additional troops from France meant the colonial army was able to crush the rebellion and regain control of the island.

Though the uprising was subdued by the French, it forced the French to establish reformed institutions in 1956 and paved the way for Madagascar to move towards independence without the need for more violent insurrection.

While estimates of the number of Malagasy casualties vary wildly from 11,000 to 100,000, the indisputable violent repression of the uprising had a major impact on the country.

Martyrs' Day is a time to remember those who sacrificed their lives in the rebellion for their country's freedom. 29th March was first declared as a day of mourning by President Tsiranana in 1967.

A national museum dedicated to the Uprising was inaugurated in 2012 by President Andry Rajoelina at Moramanga.

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