TALLINN -- Celebrations marking Estonia's Independence Day began with state flag raising in a ceremony at dawn this Saturday.
The tradition of flag hoisting was started on February 24, 1918. The flag was raised several hours before the German invasion.
The Estonian flag was raised again over Tallinn only two years ago, in 1920, when the peace treaty with Soviet Russia was signed. It was the first act of international recognition of the sovereign state. The treaty allowed Estonia to come out of the war.
The winter has impeded the traditional sequence of celebration events this year. For the first time since the independence regaining in 1992, a military parade was not held. It was canceled because of the severe frost.
The traditional reception also for the first time will take place outside Tallinn, but not in the city. The Estonian president decided to hold it in Tartu.