14:11 Nov. 21, 2016
Orange Revolution and Euromaidan protests are remembered on 21 November
Ukraine is marking its National Day of Dignity and Freedom, the new holiday established by a presidential decree 2 years ago.
The national holiday, celebrated annually on 21 November, commemorates the 2004 Orange Revolution and the 2013 Euromaidan protests.
Kyiv's Independence Square became the centre of Ukraine's pro-European movement in November 2013 after the disgraced former President Viktor Yanukovych snubbed an EU trade deal for closer ties with Moscow.
The Kremlin-loyal Yanukovych fled office in February 2014 after deadly clashes between riot police and protesters, which left over 100 activists dead.
The 2004 Orange Revolution, which also began in November, marked the first national majority vote for a pro-European candidate, and highlighted the growth of European identity among the Ukrainian electorate. Unlike the Euromaidan revolution, it produced change without bloodshed.
Today Kyiv, as well as in other cities, are holding memorial meetings, ceremonies and art shows which will be attended by the representatives of government, local authorities, people's deputies, participants of the revolutionary events of 2004 and 2013-2014, ATO combatants, representatives of NGOs, volunteer movements, youth organizations, and clergy, UNIAN reports.
Flowers will be laid to the monuments and memorials to the Heroes of the so-called Heavenly Hundred [activists killed during protests] and fallen Ukrainian soldiers.
Some 6,000 law enforcers will be ensuring public order in Kyiv on November 21-22, and another 15,000 – across Ukraine.
Kyiv's Independence Square under tight security today. Heavy police presence, metal detectors, bomb-sniffing dogs. https://t.co/AcQr3JkbWc— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) November 21, 2016
Significant security presence in Kyiv today as authorities prepare for marking of 3rd anniversary of beginning of EuroMaidan Revolution. pic.twitter.com/xqD10GykRV— Isaac Webb (@isaacdwebb) November 21, 2016