Every year, on June 26, Ukraine celebrates the Day of the Crimean Tatar flag - the national flag of the indigenous people of Ukraine - the Crimean Tatars.
The history of this holiday has more than centuries of roots. In 1917, at the first Kurultai of the Crimean Tatar people, the blue flag with the famous Crimean Tatar symbol - the tamga - was recognized as national.
In totalitarian Soviet times, the Crimean Tatar flag, like the flag of a free Ukraine, was banned by the communist authorities. Only the display of the flag was considered a crime against Soviet rule. Already in 1970-1980, a large part of the Crimean Tatar youth did not know their flag.
It was from the moment of the return of the Crimean Tatars to the Crimea, already during the times of independent Ukraine, that the flag began its revival together with its people.
Since the Russian occupation of Crimea, Crimean Tatars have been severely persecuted and discriminated against because of their clear pro-Ukrainian stance. And today it is the Crimean Tatars who make up the majority of the Kremlin's political prisoners. At the same time, the study of the Crimean Tatar language in schools is being systematically cleaned up, activists are being persecuted for storing literature, administrative protocols are being written for using symbols, and criminal cases are being opened for holding rallies.
But every year on June 26, Crimean Tatars celebrate the Day of the Crimean Tatar Flag - a holiday of those who preserve and respect their national symbol.