On 3 March Bulgarians celebrated the 139th anniversary of the liberation of Bulgaria.

On this date in 1878 in the village of San Stefano, close to Istanbul, a peace treaty that ended the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878 and restored the Bulgarian state was signed.

Celebrations were held across the country. Thousands of Bulgarians climbed the historic peak of Shipka to pay homage to the endeavors of the heroes who gave their lives for the freedom of Bulgaria. The Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria Ognyan Gerdjikov took part in the official rally and the worship there.

In the morning there was a solemn ceremony of raising the national flag at the Monument of the Unknown Soldier in Sofia; in the evening there were military tattoos on the National Assembly square. The President and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Bulgaria Rumen Radev received the honorary formation of the representative units of the Bulgarian Army. The head of the state gave a speech, in which he said:

„On this day 139 years ago Bulgaria revived. Many events precede this resurrection, but one thing connects them – the memory.

The memory of faith gives birth to the Bulgarian Easter and the ecclesiastical independence. The memory of the history inspires the monk Paisii to try and evoke the Bulgarians after centuries of despondency. The memory of the language and letters gives to our national Revival heroes the power of the word, to wake their contemporaries up. The bruises from the scourge and the marks of the suffering are not a Vazov’s myth. Even five centuries of Ottoman rule can not erase the memory of who we are.

The man of the future will be the one with deepest memory, says a philosopher. One needs a deep root to resist the winds. That is why it is necessary to remember. We must not forget those hotheads who with their sacrifice brought back the Bulgarian issue on the agenda of Europe. Remember Batak. Do not forget the peasants who burned their homes to earn their freedom, as reported by Zahari Stoyanov. Honor the handful of Spartans, who defended Shipka.

Behind us is Tsar Liberator monument. Russian people are not afraid of sacrifice in the name of faith and brotherhood, said General Skobelev. Under the banner of Emperor Alexander II soldiers of many nations - Russians, Romanians, Finns, Ukrainians, Poles, Lithuanians laid their bones for our freedom. Serbs and Montenegrins lie on our battle fields. To them all is our deep human gratitude.

A man without memory is poorer than a man without future, he does not even know who he is - says a historian. Each era offers its version of history, but only the original of the national Revival heroes is built with deeds and written in blood. We should not forget it as it is the foundation of present-day Bulgaria. And let's not look at the past as a burden. The past is capital because every defeat is a lesson, and every triumph – inspiration, when the pages of history are read with humility and gratitude for the victims – ours and foreign.

To remember is a duty! Because history does not provide forgiveness for forgetfulness.

Bow to those who died for the freedom of the motherland.

Long live Bulgaria! “