Today marks 115 Years since Bulgaria’s Independence

Society » CULTURE | September 22, 2023, Friday // 12:12
Bulgaria: Today marks 115 Years since Bulgaria’s Independence Prince Ferdinand

Today marks the 115th anniversary of Bulgaria's declaration of independence.

On September 22, 1908, Bulgaria rejected its political vassal dependence on the Ottoman Empire, a result of the decisions of the Berlin Congress in 1878, and became a sovereign state, an equal partner of the other European countries. Today's date has been celebrated as an official holiday of the country since 1998.

The declaration of independence became possible 30 years after the Russo-Turkish war of 1877-1878 after which Bulgaria was liberated from the Ottoman yoke. Only in the summer of 1908, after the Young Turk revolution in the Ottoman Empire, conditions were created for Bulgaria to proclaim its independence.

The decision to declare independence was made in August 1908 at a meeting between Prince Ferdinand and Prime Minister Alexander Malinov in Hungary. On September 22, in the Church of the Forty Martyrs, Bulgaria was declared an independent kingdom, and Prince Ferdinand I assumed the title of Tsar of the Bulgarians. The place was chosen specifically to emphasize the continuity with the medieval Bulgarian state.

"Always peace-loving, My People today yearn for their cultural and economic progress; in this direction, nothing should hinder Bulgaria; nothing should stand in the way of its success. Such is the desire of My People, such is its will - to be according to its wants. The Bulgarian people and its Head of State cannot but think alike and wish for one thing. Actually independent, My country is stumbling in its normal and peaceful development by certain ties, with the formal severing of which will remove the cooling that has occurred between Bulgaria and Turkey," read the Manifesto that Ferdinand read.

Russia did not want a military conflict in the Balkans and undertook to mediate in the negotiations between Turkey and Bulgaria. It agreed to forgive the debt of the Ottoman Empire, left over from the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878, in exchange for which the Sublime Porte refused to demand compensation from Bulgaria and recognized its independence.

Officially, this happened on April 6, 1909, after which, for 10 days, the European powers recognized Bulgaria as a kingdom and as an independent country.

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Tags: Bulgaria, independence, Turkish, Russia

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