May 17 is an important day for Norwegians. It is a Day when Norway celebrates its Constitution Day. A noteworthy aspect of the Norwegian Constitution Day is its non-military nature. All over Norway, children's parades with an abundance of flags form the central elements of the celebration. In a similar fashion, yesterday over 100 Norwegians and their friends, among whom the largest proportion were students studying medicine at Rīgas Stradiņa universitāte (Riga Stradins University), joined a parade in the Old Town Riga, celebrating Norway's Constitution Day along with the values its stands for - democracy, peace, and freedom.
Image caption: Norwegian Ambassador to Latvia H.E. Kristian Ødegaard leading the May 17 parade through the Old Town Riga.
May 17 celebration in Riga was organized by Norwegian Embassy in Riga in Riga, Norwegian Chamber of Commerce in Latvia and Norwegian student association ANSA Latvia. There were sausages and waffles served - traditional staple at May 17 celebration in Norway. Thanks to Narvesen for providing additional refreshments for the event!
This year, in the face of Russia's unprovoked and gruesome invasion of Ukraine, the importance of standing up for freedom and democracy is as high as ever before. Let us all cherish these values and continue the close connections and partnership between Norway and Latvia in defending them! Cheers to Norway on May 17! And cheers to the close bilateral relations between both countries!