Remarks of the President at the ceremony to inaugurate the State Flag Square
In the run-up to our main holiday, Independence Day, we inaugurate the State Flag Square.
The red and green flag, a symbol of our sovereignty and freedom, the things that Belarusians craved for over many centuries, will be hoisted on a 70 meter flagstaff.
The road towards the Belarusian statehood was thorny and challenging. It was not before the 20th century that we got a chance to define our identity. The Belarusian Soviet Socialist Republic became the first step towards independence, a foundation to build on a sovereign Belarus. The BSSR, one of the UN founding members, adopted the new red and green flag in 1951 to emphasize the unique identity and independence of the state.
For millions of our compatriots the national symbols of the BSSR embody Belarus’ achievements during the Soviet period.
This is the reason why at the referendum held in 1995 the Belarusians chose the current flag, emblem and anthem which reflect the unbreakable bonds between the country’s development in the past and present.
The national flag of the Republic of Belarus is an integral part of our past and present. The red color stands for the courage of people who fought and bled to defend their freedom. The green color is the color of life and hope, the color of our woods, meadows and fields, a testimony of the peaceful and hardworking nature of Belarusians. The white ornamented stripe symbolizes our purity and moral values.
Belarus has been dynamically developing and establishing itself on the international arena under this flag for almost two decades. It flaunts over our sports victories, flutters on the highest summits and in the poles of our planet, represents our country in other states, cements the national accord and patriotic spirit of the Belarusian people.
Every one of us regardless of nationality is proud to be called a citizen of Belarus. The notion of “the Belarusian people” is based on the great spiritual unity of all those who found home in our generous, beautiful and kind land.
To respect and honor our state symbols are the absolute duties and sacred responsibilities of all members of this big family.
The understanding of the deep historical and political meaning of the emblem and the flag of the Republic of Belarus, knowledge of the anthem and the Constitution – the country’s fundamental law – should find way into the common mentality of Belarusians.
It is imperative to promote the real cult of the state symbols, so that they are revered in every Belarusian home as a national pride and a source of patriotism.
Since ancient times the Belarusian land has been rich in memorable and sacred places which make up the priceless legacy of Belarusians.
The modern history of sovereign Belarus witnessed the restoration of monuments of the past and the construction of new architectural ensembles, which are a worthy input of our generation in the spiritual and cultural heritage of the planet.
In the years of independence the castles in Mir and Nesvizh were restored, the Bolshoi Theater and the Yanka Kupala Theater were renovated, the House of the Republic and the National Library which is one of the most marvelous specimens of modern global architecture were rebuilt, the Church of All Saints, the unique sports facility Minsk Arena and other landmark facilities which are the pride of the nation were erected.
In the very heart of Minsk we envisioned a big complex consisting of the State Flag Square, the Palace of Independence and a ceremonial hall. This ensemble will be an eloquent symbol of our sovereignty, our independence. We will show the entire world that Belarus has established itself as a state that is confident about its future.
In this place, under the fluttering Belarusian flag, young people will receive their first passports and recruits will take the oath of allegiance; here children will be sworn in as pioneers; this place will be frequented by families, veterans, and tourists from around the world.
I am convinced that this facility will become the center of the sovereign state, the pride of our compatriots, the visiting card of Belarus.
From all my heart I congratulate on the inauguration of the State Flag Square in Minsk and wish you Happy Independence Day.
I wish health, happiness, success in all undertakings to you, your families and friends.
Happy Republic Day!