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Bulgaria celebrates 113 years of its Proclamation of Independence

Photo: BGNES

On September 22, 1908, Bulgaria reemerged on the world map after a five-century Ottoman yoke. The liberation of the country came true on March 3, 1878, after the end of the Russo-Turkish War, but the recognition of Bulgaria’s independence was a long process that involved all the governments of post-liberation Bulgaria. By virtue of the Treaty of Berlin of July 1878, the Principality of Bulgaria was a vassal of the Ottoman Empire, and the Knyaz was a vassal of the suzerain. Bulgaria was still legally dependent and had no right to sign international agreements.

Bulgarians had been looking for 30 years for favorable international conditions that would allow overcoming these legal clauses that were great burden to Bulgaria, historian Acad. Georgi Markov says. Such a moment came in the summer of 1908, when the Young Turk Revolution was taking place in the Ottoman Empire. Bulgaria, represented by Prime Minister Alexander Malinov, decided to take advantage of the Balkan crisis.

That is how on September 22, 1908, Knyaz Ferdinand declared the Independence of Bulgaria. This took place in the old Bulgarian capital city of Veliko Tarnovo with a manifesto written by Prime Minister Alexander Malinov and read by Ferdinand under the arch of the church "Sts. Forty Martyrs”. After that the document was read once again by Alexander Malinov outside the church. This act effectively rejected the last vassal ties with the Ottoman Empire.

After complex negotiations on April 6, 1909, the Independence of Bulgaria was officially recognized by the Sublime Porte. September 22 was declared an official holiday by a decision of the National Assembly of September 10, 1998.

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