Ethiopia celebrates 'Victory Day'
Monday, May 05, 2014
ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopians celebrated "Victory Day" on Monday to commemorate the country's victory over the invading forces of Fascist Italy some 80 years ago.
President Mulatu Teshome laid a wreath on the Victory Monument in the capital's Arat Kilo district to honor those who lost their lives fighting Italian colonial troops.
Italian forces invaded Ethiopia for the second time in 1935. Only a few years later, however, Ethiopians and allied forces managed to end the war and liberate the country.
Every year, Ethiopians mark "Victory Day" on May 5, the day on which Emperor Haile Selassie reentered Addis Ababa – exactly five years after it was occupied by Italy – and again mounted the throne.
"Ethiopians are proud to celebrate this day as the victory of our forefathers provided an exemplar for fighting tyranny," Teshome said at a rally held in the capital to mark the occasion.
Head of the Ancient Ethiopia Patriots' Association, Lij Daniel Jote Mesfin Seleshi, likewise paid tribute to the fallen Ethiopian heroes.
"Our forefathers sacrificed [themselves] to safeguard the sovereignty of Ethiopian territory," he said.
Seleshi also called on the government to provide care and support for the country's veterans, who fought to defend the country from foreign invaders.
Government officials, ambassadors, veterans, students and other public figures attended Monday's event.
According to historical documents, up to 100,000 Ethiopians lost their lives during the five-year struggle against invading Italian forces.
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