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Daily Dutch News in English

Netherlands Celebrates 65 Years Of Liberation

The Netherlands celebrates Liberation Day on Wednesday. Across the country, a significant number of activities are organized to celebrate the end of the occupation by Germany during World War II 65 years ago.

The theme of the celebration this year is Freedom worldwide. At thirteen locations in the Netherlands are Liberation Festivals organized, which draw around one million visitors. In cities in the twelve Dutch provinces and in Amsterdam are a total of 250 acts. Among the artists are the so called Ambassadors of Freedom this year, Guus Meeuwis, Junkie XL and Boris & The Wicked Jazz Experience.

Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende opens the official national celebration of Liberation in Roermond at the beginning of the afternoon. Among the activities in the Netherlands is the Victory of Europe tour. More than 2,000 Canadian students are expected to travel to the Netherlands in May to take part in parades and other ceremonies. In Wageningen there is a show with historic vehicles, paratroopers and veterans.

Prime Minister Balkenende and Queen Beatrix will attend the May 5th Concert on the Amstel in Amsterdam this evening which is the official closing celebration. The Limburg Symphony Orchestra plays pieces by Puccini, Gershwin and Tchaikovsky. The concert will be broadcast live on the Dutch TV Netherlands 1.

Although May 5 is a national holiday, not everyone is free on Fri May 5, it depends on the collective agreement or employer.