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May 2009 - Celebrating Eritrea's 18th Independence Day
 
Our Independence Line - Guarantee for Development
 

 

Asmara Eritrea - May 24 2009

 

With the entry card for the celebrations at the Asmara Stadium today, my passport, a bottle of water, and my camera, I walk to the place where some twenty thousand Eritreans, government officials, representatives of the military, diplomats, religious leaders, and a few lucky tourists  will witness the celebration at the national level.

Again I am very lucky also to have an invitation for a seat on the good side of the Asmara Stadium. Thank you Haile and Haile! At the entrance red and yellow roses are handed out to the public, as well as the program, leaflets and sun caps. Because I am early, I can choose a seat in a good position to picture over the fences and close to the center of the stadium.

When a photographer of the Ministry of Information is making pictures of the public, I ask her if she can picture me with my own camera, so I will have a souvenir. She says she's not allowed to do so. But a few days later, I will find the picture I asked for, with me in the middle, in the Eritrean Profile Newspaper of May 27!

The event starts with a few minutes of silence in honor of the martyrs. Every Eritrean family has lost sons and daughters, brothers or sisters in the history's longest war of liberation. Today the Eritreans celebrate a hard won victory paid with heavy sacrifices, and not just an administrative fact, like all other African countries.

The 18th anniversary of Eritrea's independence starts with colorful parades of the Eritrean Army, Navy, Air and Police Forces and a fly-by of three Eritrean Air Force MiG-29 fighter planes and three helicopters.

The NHCC and presidents speech are followed by patriotic songs, drama, musicals, cultural shows, and a 45 minutes show presented by 3300 elementary, junior and high school students, waving flags and colorful banners, and the presentation of Eritrea's national symbol, the camel.

The celebrations ends with the singing of Eritrea's national anthem with an Eritrean flag on the background formed by the green, red, blue and yellow banners of hundreds of children on the opposite grandstand of Asmara stadium.

 

PROGRAM

  • Commemoration of martyrs (4:00pm)

  • NHCC speech

  • The presidents speech

  • Parade

  • Musical "The spear"

  • Independence Day poem "The inner self"

  • Musical "The heart"

  • Show by students "Congratulations"

  • Show by students: "The camel"

  • Show by students "My choice"

  • National anthem (7:15pm)

 

Military parades, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Military parades, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Eritrean Air Force, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Eritrean Air Force, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.
(The MiG-29 fighter planes were to fast for my camera)

The audience watching the Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium

The audience (with me in the middle) watching the Independence
 Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium. Photo: Shabait.com

Military parades, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Military parades, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Bedawit singer, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Bedawit singer, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Bedawit woman, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Bedawit woman, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Musical "The Heart", Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Musical "The Heart", Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

"Yohanna", Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

"Yohanna" (Congratulations), Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

Show by students, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

National Anthem, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium

National anthem, Independence Day ceremonies - Asmara Stadium.

18th Independence Day of Eritrea - Asmara 24/05/2009

 
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