POLITICS
President of European Commission attended celebration of 100 years of the First Republic of Georgia
30 May, 2018
On 26 May, Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, joined celebrations in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi to commemorate the country’s centenary Independence Day.
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Jean-Claude Juncker with Georgian PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili

At the opening ceremony, President Juncker stated: “Georgia is a country that has always been part of Europe and has always looked towards Europe. I want us to break down more of the barriers that still exist between us, and step up our support to each other, building
on the progress we have already achieved.”

President Juncker gave a speech at the Oath Taking Ceremony to the 100th Anniversary of Georgia's First Democratic Republic. He also gave a joint press statement with Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili later on in the day.

Throughout the day, locals of and visitors to Tbilisi came to visit the European Union stand on Rustaveli Avenue. People were encouraged to learn about the history of the EU, relations with Georgia and positive results for Georgian citizens.
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"I love Georgia", writes the President of European Commission

The Independence Day of Georgia was observed on May 26th and in relation to this celebration of a great value, various events were held across the city.

On this date 100 years ago Georgia gained independence from the Russian Empire, a part of which it had been since the early 19th century.
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Georgian PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili

On May 26 of 1918, exactly at 5:10am, the National Council of Georgia (that was renamed into the Parliament of Georgia) adopted the Act of Independence that gave birth to the Democratic Republic of Georgia.
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Georgian PM Giorgi Kvirikashvili and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker

However, the taste of freedom turned out to be quite short; in 1921 Georgia was invaded by the Soviet Russian army and eventually incorporated into the newly formed Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Only 70 years later, on April 9 of 1991, Georgia managed to free itself from the totalitarian system and claim back its independence, in the aftermath of the tragedy and national rally that took place on April 9, 1989. Dozens of citizens fell victim to the Soviet Russian army that suppressed the peaceful rally with unseen cruelty.
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Fireworks above Tbilisi TV Tower on Independence Day

Despite all the hardships that Georgia has undergone, Georgian people always strived to independence and never lost the feeling of inner freedom.

Related stories:

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Georgia celebrates 100th anniversary of Establishment of First Democratic Republic – What happened on May 26

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Century-old Georgian independence petition discovered in University of Oxford
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