Independence Day is celebrated on 27 February in Dominican Republic to commemorate the nation’s most recent declaration of independence, which was against a Haitian occupation.
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What is now Dominican Republic has a long history of Spanish settlement that dates back to the expeditions of Christopher Columbus. But the French gained control of what is now Dominican Republic in 1795. Soon after Haiti escaped French rule, Spain retook their old Dominican domain, but the region rebelled successfully in 1821. The very next year, in 1822, Haiti conquered the fledgling nation and occupied it for 22 years.
A secret pro-independence society was formed, however, and on 27 February, 1844, Juan Pablo Duarte and other national heroes declared independence and began the struggle that eventually set their nation free.
As the whole month of February is the time of Carnival in Dominican Republic, it is already a festive time, especially on the weekends. But 27 February is the climax of the period of celebration. The city of La Vega has the biggest parade, but costumed, patriotic parades occur throughout the country.
The president will give a speech on this day, and special ceremonies will honour the heroes of the Dominican war for independence. And Dominican flags flutter profusely from balconies across the nation.
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