Martyrs’ Day in Myanmar
Martyrs’ Day is a public holiday that’s observed annually in Myanmar on the 19th of July. This holiday commemorates the assassination of General Aung San and his cabinet in 1947. This day is considered to be the second most important holiday in Myanmar, second only the Myanmar Independence Day on January 4th.
It’s a day on which many government officials will visit the Martyrs’ Mausoleum in Yangon, a monument that’s dedicated to Aung San and the cabinet members who were killed. On this day, there are events all across the country, which include the official reading of the Poem for Martyrs’ Day and smaller commemorative events attended by the public.
The History Of Martyrs’ Day In Myanmar
During the 19th century, Myanmar (at the time it was called Burma) was under the control of Great Britain. Even at this early point in history, however, the people of Burma resented being colonized by Britain and there was a high level of unrest in the country. Before the beginning of World War II, Burma had started the road towards autonomy, and it became a separately administered British colony with Ba Maw as the Premier of Burma and its first Prime Minister.
After the war, the Panglong Agreement was created on February 12th, 1947. This would pave the way for Burma to become an independent state. An interim government was then formed with general Aung San as the Prime Minister. Gunmen went into a cabinet meeting on July 19th, 1947, and shot Aung San dead, along with seven other key leaders of the interim government.
These assassinations were planned by U Saw, a political rival of Aung San. A few months later, U Saw was found guilty and executed. On January 4th, 1948, Burma gained its independence from colonial rule. The holiday Martyrs’ Day was created not long after to remember the driving force that would allow Burma to achieve its independence.
Observing Martyrs’ Day In Myanmar
After officials visit the Martyrs’ Mausoleum in Yangon, there’s a memorial service. There are also special events held all across Myanmar that highlight the importance of this day. Because it’s one of the most important holidays of the year, it’s celebrated by a lot of citizens.