Netherlands celebrates its Liberation today
Today, the Netherlands celebrates Liberation Day for the first time in two years without coronavirus restrictions. Instead of an online program, there will be Liberation Festivals in 14 places in the country. The May 5 concert, the traditional end of Liberation Day, will again happen outside on the Amstel in Amsterdam with an audience and in the presence of the Royal family.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte will attend the May 5 lecture in Oss. Lieutenant Colonel Gijs Tuinman, Knight of the Military Willems-Order, gives the address. After the speech, Rutte will ignite the Liberation Fire in 's-Hertogenbosch, which marks the start of the Liberation Festivals.
This year, several cities will not only celebrate the end of the Second World War but also remember the victims of the war in Ukraine. Maksym Kononenko, the ambassador of Ukraine in the Netherlands, will give a speech during the Liberation Festival in The Hague, and the Ukrainian band Go-A will perform at the Groningen Liberation Festival.
In addition, Ukrainian refugees in Lelystad and Rotterdam, among other places, will join the Dutch Freedom Meal. This is a new part of Liberation Day, in which people can celebrate freedom together with soup. Soup will be available in over 400 places in the country. In Het Gooi, for example, cans of soup are handed out from historic army vehicles, and an old-fashioned soup cart will drive around in Noord-Brabant.
Last year, over 200 performances could be viewed online via a digital program instead of on stages in the 14 cities. The May 5 concert was held inside the Royal Theater Carré in Amsterdam and broadcast live.
Reporting by ANP