Independence Day in Uzbekistan is held every 1 September. This official public holiday commemorates the day in 1991 when Uzbekistan declared itself an independent republic and no longer a part of the USSR.
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As the USSR continued to collapse and a coup attempt wrought chaos in Moscow itself, Uzbekistan took advantage of the situation to declare its independence. At that point, it lost the old title of Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic and took on the new name of Republic of Uzbekistan.
On Independence Day, there are major festive events planned in the capital city of Tashkent as well as in each of Uzbekistan’s 12 regions. The show in Independence Square in Tashkent is filled with singing, dancing, cultural exhibits, craft fairs, food stalls, and more during the day. At night, the square lights up with an explosion of fireworks.
At home, families gather and celebrate together. There is usually a festive meal where traditional dishes are served.
Independence Day is a time when the people of Uzbekistan remember the long captivity under Russian and Soviet control and are thankful for their newfound freedom, which is still relatively recent from a historical perspective.