Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation in Ukraine Date in the current year: May 8, 2016

Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation in Ukraine Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation is a memorial day observed in Ukraine on May 8, the day before Victory Day. This remembrance day was officially established by President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko in March 2015.

Because of the time difference, Western countries and former Soviet republics commemorate the capitulation of Germany in the Second World War on different dates. Victory in Europe Day is celebrated on May 8, while Victory Day in ex-Soviet republics is observed on May 9. In 2004, the United Nations General Assembly declared both days as a time of remembrance and reconciliation for those who lost their lives during the Second World War.

Originally Ukraine celebrated only Victory Day, just like the rest former republics of the USSR. However, in 2015 Petro Poroshenko decided that two days should be set aside for celebrating the victory over Nazis in Europe. May 9 (Victory Day) remained a public holiday, while May 8 (Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation) was designated as a remembrance day.

According to Poroshenko, Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation was established to honor those who gave their lives, defending Ukraine during WWII, while on Victory Day Ukrainians honor living veterans of the war.

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