Angola celebrates Day of the Armed Struggle every 4 February to commemorate the day in 1961 when Angolan MPLA (People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola) forces assaulted a prison house in Luanda and freed independence leaders who were incarcerated there. The day is also sometimes called Liberation Movement Day.
|2020||4 Feb||Tue||Day of the Armed Struggle|
|2021||4 Feb||Thu||Day of the Armed Struggle|
The attack on the jail was in reaction to earlier events that February. In the Angolan region of Baixa de Cassanje, workers on a cotton plantation went on strike, destroyed their ID cards, and protested the poor working conditions. Soon, the uprising spread to other parts of the country. But air attacks by the Portuguese authorities and other methods brutally suppressed the uprising and killed many people. Some say 7,000 or more were killed.
This uprising was only the beginning of a 15-year struggle for Angolan independence, but it symbolised the spirit of the Angolan people that persevered through the whole long ordeal. In 1996, Angola’s government declared 4 February a national holiday, and it has been a major patriotic event on Angola’s calendar ever since.