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Independence Restoration Day

Independence Restoration Day 2019 and 2020

Independence Restoration Day in Estonia is marked on 20 August each year to celebrate the day in 1991 when Estonia regained the freedom it had lost to the Soviet Union more than five decades earlier.

YearDateDayHoliday
201920 AugTueIndependence Restoration Day
202020 AugThuIndependence Restoration Day

After Estonia’s long and ancient history that included Viking and Teutonic influence, in 1629, Sweden took control of mainland Estonia. In 1710, Russia forced Sweden to hand over Estonia as a part of the Treaty of Nystad. In 1918, after the Bolshevik Revolution, Estonia gained independence from Russia only to lose it again to the Soviets then, in 1941, to the Germans.

In 1944, Soviet forces again took control of, and began to ravage, Estonia. Decades later, a large majority of western countries declared that Soviet occupation of Estonia was illegal and Estonia finally declared independence, again, on 20 August 1991.

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