Victory Day in Estonia Date in the current year: June 23, 2016

Victory Day in Estonia Victory Day is a public holiday in Estonia celebrated on June 23. It commemorates Estonian victory in the 1919 Battle of Cēsis, also known as the Battle of Võnnu. It was a decisive battle in the Estonian War of Independence.

Following the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 in Russia, Estonia proclaimed its independence in February 1918. Neither Soviet Russia, nor German Empire recognized the independence of Estonia. Thus began the Estonian War of Independence.

The decisive battle of the war was fought on June 19—23, 1919, near the town of Cēsis (or Võnnu). Estonian forces supported by the 2nd Latvian Cēsis Regiment defeated the Baltische Landeswehr, making the pro-German forces retreat toward Riga.

The anniversary of the battle of Cēsis was proclaimed as a public holiday in 1934. When Estonia was occupied by the Soviet Union and became the Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic, the celebration of Victory Day was discontinued. It was reestablished in 1992 following the collapse of the USSR.

Victory Day celebration in Estonia is closely tied to the observance of Midsummer Day on June 24. The state flags are hoisted on June 23 and are never lowered during the night between the two holidays.

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