Public holidays

March 2 Victory of Adwa

The Battle of Adwa was fought on 1 March 1896 between Ethiopia and Italy near the town of Adwa, Ethiopia, in Tigray. It was the climactic battle of the First Italo–Ethiopian War.


Of all the African powers, only the ancient kingdom of Ethiopia remained completely free from European domination by the end of the 19th century. This was no accident of history; Ethiopia secured its sovereignty by inflicting a decisive and humiliating defeat upon the Italian invaders at Adowa (or Adwa) on March 1, 1896. The battle at Adowa was, at the time, the greatest defeat inflicted upon a European army by an African army since the time of Hannibal, and its consequences were felt well into the 20th century. As an example of colonial warfare on an epic scale, it cannot be surpassed. As an example of the twin follies of arrogance and underestimation of one's enemies, it should never be forgotten.

May 5 Patriots Day

Ethiopia, which Italy had unsuccessfully tried to conquer in the 1890s, was in 1934 one of the few independent states in a European-dominated Africa. A border incident between Ethiopia and Italian Somaliland that December 1933 gave Benito Mussolini an excuse to intervene. Rejecting all arbitration offers, the Italians invaded Ethiopia on Oct. 3, 1935.

The occupation of Ethiopia by Italy triggered a resistance by Ethiopian patriots led by such gallant personalities as Ras Abebe Aregay, Belay Zeleke, Abdis Aaga etc. and lasted for five years until the Italian forces were finally defeated in May 5 1941.

May 28 the Down fall of the Derge

The down fall of the Military Regime of Derge.