All Russians across the nation celebrate the most important state holiday, Russia’s Day on June 12. The country goes on a long holiday for four days from June 12 to June 16. The holiday was introduced in 1992 in memory of political events which took place in 1990, when the first congress of deputies of the Russian Federation approved the Declaration of Russia’s State Sovereignty. The document became the reference point in the new history of the nation.
The holiday was officially introduced in 1994, when it was named Independence Day. In 2002, the holiday was renamed to Russia’s Day. About a half of the Russian population are certain that June 12 is the day which celebrates the national unity.
Opinion polls show that three-third of all Russians are proud of their citizenship. Most of Russians are familiar with national symbols, which evoke only positive emotions with them.
The holiday already has it traditions. On June 12 the Kremlin holds a special ceremony to present State Awards of the Russian Federation. There will be a grand gala show held on the Red Square at night.
A series of significant events have been timed to Russia’s Day this year. The X International Congress of the Russian Press started working in Moscow yesterday. Representatives of Russian publications from almost 70 countries of the world participate in the Congress. President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attended the meeting on the first day of its work.
Making a speech at the forum, Medvedev said that his administration would ensure media freedom and respect for human rights. He said that his government sees freedom of speech and adherence to law as essential to building a free and responsible society.
Putin said at the meeting that Russia was one of the major newsmakers of the modern world. He added that the Russian press, one of the largest in the world, is unique for its openness to people of various nationalities.
About 37 percent of Russian citizens know that the correct name of the holiday sounds like Russia’s Days, not Independence Day, sociologists of Levada Center said.
Five percent of Russians believe that the holiday celebrates the approval of the Declaration of Russia’s Independence. One percent of Russians think that June 12 is the day to celebrate the election of Russia’s first president. Three percent of the polled said that they did not consider June 12 as a holiday at all.