As part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of Ukraine's independence, more than 150 festive events will take place throughout the country. After all, 30 years of independence is a truly significant event that cannot fit in the narrow confines of formal celebrations. Because Ukraine is a young country with a centuries-old history.
Over the centuries, millions of Ukrainians have fought for independence, gone through betrayals, wars and famines. And having gained such coveted freedom and statehood, a generation of our contemporaries was forced to defend freedom and the European choice in revolutions, and later - to defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Ukrainian state from the encroachments of the northern neighbor.
During the 30 years of independence, Ukraine has overcome many challenges. But we withstood, we are standing and we will definitely win! Therefore, this year our country must loudly declare itself to the world.
Hundreds of foreign guests, including heads of state, representatives of foreign governments and parliaments, will arrive in Ukraine to take part in the Independence Day celebrations. In total, about 30 delegations from countries and international organizations are expected.
Festive events will last from August 22 to 24. In these three days, more than 150 events dedicated to the 30th anniversary of Ukraine's independence will take place across the country. All of them will be united by the slogan "You are my only one", which symbolizes the vision of Ukraine's independence as a dream that many generations of Ukrainians have sought to achieve.
On August 22, with the participation of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the "National Legend of Ukraine" award will be presented. It will be awarded to citizens for outstanding personal merits in the formation of independent Ukraine, strengthening its statehood, defending the Homeland and serving the Ukrainian people. The awards will also be given to those who have made a significant contribution to the development of the national economy, science, education, culture, art, sports, healthcare and are active in charity and public activity.
On August 23, on the Day of the State Flag of Ukraine, in the geographical center of our country in the Cherkasy region, a solemn raising of the blue and yellow flag - a symbol of our independence - will take place with the participation of the Head of State. Celebrations will be held in all regions of the country. In particular, the facades of the buildings of the Verkhovna Rada, the National Opera, the Palace of Ukraine, Tsum and the Gulliver shopping mall in Kyiv will get the colors of the State Flag.
Also on this day, Kyiv will host the founding summit of the initiative of the President of Ukraine "Crimea Platform", which will unite all existing national and international efforts to deoccupy the Ukrainian peninsula. The inaugural summit will be the platform's first event at the highest political level. The President of Ukraine, the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada, the Prime Minister, leaders of the Crimean Tatar people, heads of foreign delegations, representatives of the newly created expert network of the Crimea platform will speak at it. The event will consist of four panels on the following topics: non-recognition policy and sanctions; security challenges; protection of human rights in the temporarily occupied Crimea; restoration of the rights of the Crimean Tatar people.
The summit of the First Ladies and Gentlemen "Soft Power in the New Reality", initiated by the wife of the President of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, will take place on the same day. The event will be held in the National Reserve "Sophia of Kyiv". Today, there is virtually no international platform where the first ladies and gentlemen can communicate on a regular basis, combining the experience of their countries and their leadership. At the initiative of Olena Zelenska, a humanitarian forum will be held in Ukraine. The event will be attended not only by the first ladies and gentlemen, but also by experts from different countries and industries.
In addition, a festive concert is planned for the heads of state at the National Opera of Ukraine on August 23 with the participation of opera and ballet legends.
On the Independence Day of Ukraine, August 24, a festive parade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine will take place on the central street of the capital symbolizing the power of our independence. Events are planned with the participation of representatives and equipment of all forces of the security and defense sector of Ukraine and partner countries.
The concert of Italian singer Andrea Bocelli will take place on the same day.
In the evening of August 24 at the NSC "Olympic", a holiday show "Independence in our DNA. Independence Day of the Country" will begin. It will be attended by pop stars, opera and ballet dancers, as well as a symphony orchestra. A single musical performance will combine songs that have become the musical heritage of past generations and hits of the future. This will symbolize the culture of our independence. Without pauses and stops, the performers will pass a kind of "baton" to each other and create a single composition of dozens of iconic songs for independent Ukraine. This will take place on the country's largest technology scene. The artists' performances are also an unforgettable choreography with the participation of dozens of dancers, extraordinary costumes, huge screens, a large-scale light and drone show. The music performance will end with bright fireworks.