The path to independence that began on May 28, 1918

The path to independence that began on May 28, 1918

On 28 May 2018, we will commemorate the centennial of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (ADR). This fateful day is one of the most glorious pages in the history of the Azerbaijani people. The Azerbaijan Democratic Republic was the first secular democratic republic in the Muslim East. It was the logical result of centuries-long development of economy, socio-political and cultural fields, awakening of the indigenous population and revival process. ADR heralded   the Azerbaijani people’s intellectual and cultural level, high talent and ability, with the period spanning from 1918 to 1920 characterised with the formation of political consciousness and national self-consciousness. Mammad Emin Resulzade, Fatali Khan Khoyski, Alimardan Topchubashov, Mammad Hasan Hajinskii, Hasan Bey Aghayev, Nasib Bey Yusifbeli, Samad Bey Mehmandarov, Ali-Agha Shikhlinskii and others are founders of the future Azerbaijan Democratic Republic. Since then, and for ever more, the names of these outstanding state figures, intellectuals, military professional and patriots have been enshrined in the memory of the Azerbaijani people.

May 28 has been celebrated as a national holiday since Azerbaijan gained independence from the Soviet Union.

Heydar Aliyev, founder of modern Azerbaijan, highly appreciated the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic and its public figures. In his speeches, decrees and orders the nationwide leader repeatedly stated that he was the heir of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic. He always relied on history of Azerbaijan and his thoughts about the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic will further maintain their relevance: "Today’s independent Azerbaijan is the successor of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan established in 1918. Inheritance is always a great responsibility, and it does not mean the repetition of previous actions or the realisation on the same level as it was before. Each heir should raise the event, the period and the structure on a new level. Our activity in Azerbaijan is based on this principle of inheritance and we may be proud of many achievements."

Reportedly, President Ilham Aliyev has signed an order declaring 2018 as a Year of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic. The order underlines that May 28, 1918 marked a landmark event in the history of Azerbaijan when Azerbaijan Democratic Republic, the first parliamentary republic in the Muslim East, was established. The order notes that having lived for only about two years, Azerbaijan Democratic Republic left an indelible mark in the history of national statehood with its rich state building experience. It also emphasizes that Azerbaijan Democratic Republic prepared a good basis for the future independence of Azerbaijan.