Convincing symbol of unity
On the evening of June 2nd, State Flag Square was solemnly opened, proceeded by the Flourish, Belarus! concert programme, attended by senior government officials and representatives of state administrative bodies and local authorities. Also in attendance were delegations from across the regions, and representatives of Minsk’s educational establishments, labour groups, trade unions, public associations, religious confessions, creative unions, veterans of the Armed Forces and representatives of diplomatic missions and international organisations. The event was broadcast by major Belarusian TV channels.
By Veniamin Mikheev
State Flag Square is located in Minsk’s Pobediteley Avenue: a 50m radius circle connected with the major faзade of the BelExpo Exhibition Centre via a 24m wide staircase. Seven granite stelas bearing the coat of arms of the regions and of the city of Minsk are situated along its walkway, while symmetrically placed columns stand either side of the staircase, bearing the words of the State Anthem and a picture of Belarus’ geographic map. A 70m pole carries a 14x7m flag.
The square will host festive events for the Day of the State Coat of Arms and the State Flag of the Republic of Belarus, as well as civil-patriotic events and visits by official delegations from foreign states. The square will also become a tourist attraction, listed by the Minsk City Executive Committee as among the sites suitable for guests to the capital.
President Lukashenko noted during the opening ceremony that respect for state symbols is essential. “Each of us, regardless of our ethnicity, is proud to call ourselves a citizen of Belarus. The notion of being Belarusian is based on the great spiritual unity of all those who found their home in our generous, beautiful and gracious land. Showing respect and honour for our state symbols is the absolute duty and sacred responsibility of all members of this big family,” he underlines.
According to the President, understanding of the deep historical and political meaning of the coat of arms and the flag of the Republic of Belarus is essential, as is knowledge of the anthem and the Constitution: the country’s fundamental law.
“It is imperative that we promote reverence for our state symbols, so that they are honoured in every Belarusian home as a source of national pride and patriotism,” the Belarusian leader asserts. He sees State Flag Square, Independence Palace and the Ceremonial Hall as the major centre of the sovereign Belarusian state.