Celebrations will begin with an ecumenical service at Riga's Dome Church and a ceremonial laying of flowers at the Freedom Monument.
Afterwards, local musicians will perform Latvian classical music at a ceremonial concert in the Latvian National Theatre. The concert will be broadcast live by Latvian Television. Members of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Latvia and members of the Congress of People's Deputies of the Soviet Union who supported restoration of Latvia’s independence in 1991 have been invited to attend this concert.
During the day, the Saeima building will be open to visitors. Residents and guests of Riga will have an opportunity to see the Plenary Chamber, representation rooms and the historically impressive interior.
In honor of the 20th anniversary of the de facto restoration of independence of Latvia, several thematic exhibitions will be held at the Saeima building. Visitors will have an opportunity to see the original Constitutional Law of August 21, 1991. Photographs and newspapers of that time will help visitors to recall the events that took place 20 years ago.
Furthermore, official letters from other countries recognizing Latvia’s independence – an indisputable testimony of regained sovereignty – will also be on display in the parliament building on the day. It is also planned to put the state awards of the Republic of Latvia on display for public viewing.
A special web-site - www.21augusts.lv, devoted to the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Constitutional Law on the Statehood of the Republic of Latvia has been launched.
The web-site contains information on the role of the August 1991 events in Latvia’s history, as well as topical information on various events to be held to honor this significant date. The web-site also features video interviews with witnesses of the de facto restoration of independence.
On August 21, 1991 the Supreme Council of the Republic of Latvia adopted the Constitutional Law on the Statehood of the Republic of Latvia, thus restoring the de facto independence of Latvia and marking the country’s return to the family of democratic countries of Europe.
This law reinstated the Constitution of Latvia (Satversme) of 1922 with its values of Western democracy and the rule of law. With the adoption of the Constitutional Law, the laws of the USSR became null and void in Latvia. On the basis of the law of August 21, other countries began recognizing the restoration of Latvia’s independence.