The state wants to include a holiday called the Day of the Czech Republic’s entry into the European Union among the important days. It is to be celebrated on May 1, the Minister for European Affairs proposes to enact. In 2024, among other things, we commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Czech Republic’s key and beneficial membership in the European Union, Minister Martin Dvořák states in the explanatory report. According to the minister, it is desirable to celebrate both pillars and anchoring moments of foreign policy according to the government’s program statement.
The Act on National Holidays, Other Holidays, Significant Days and Days of Rest in its current form does not in any way resemble the Czech Republic’s membership in the EU, however, according to Minister Martin Dvořák, “it would be entirely appropriate in view of the importance of this organization and the Czech Republic’s membership in it”. , the minister states in the explanatory report.
For example, the entry of the Czech Republic into NATO is already a significant day: “After all, the above-mentioned law already remembers March 12, when the Czech Republic joined NATO, when it includes it among significant days (§ 4). “Membership in both of the above-mentioned organizations – the EU and NATO – symbolizes the Czech Republic’s pro-Western orientation,” the minister states in his proposal.
The full draft of the amendment is here.
According to the proposed amendment to the Act on Public Holidays, Important Days and Days Off, the new holiday will simply be added to the list of important days and extended by May 1. “The bill introduces a simple insertion of May 1 among the significant days according to §4, as follows: 1. May – The day of the entry of the Czech Republic into the European Union,” the Minister for European Affairs describes the change in the explanatory report.
Pillars in accordance with the government program
The first of May is already a holiday, namely Labor Day, which according to the law on public holidays, important days and days off is among the “other” holidays, together with the New Year, Easter and Christmas holidays.
“Next year, 2024, we are commemorating, among other things, the 20th anniversary of the key and beneficial membership of the Czech Republic in the European Union. The entry of the Czech Republic into the EU and NATO is a fundamentally anchoring moment of the entire foreign policy of the Czech state,” Minister for European Affairs Martin Dvořák explains the new holiday.
According to Minister Martin Dvořák, the entry of the Czech Republic into the EU and NATO is a “fundamental anchoring moment of the entire foreign policy of the Czech state”. “A similar commemoration of the entry of the Czech Republic into NATO and the EU can be considered a desirable state, in accordance with the government’s program statement, which recalls the ties to the moments of accession and mentions both of these pillars in their essential nature for our current direction,” the minister further states in the explanatory report.
EU membership is not properly commemorated
Then the minister explains how it happened that the entry of the Czech Republic into the EU is not celebrated in the appropriate way: “The important day to commemorate the entry into NATO on March 12 was introduced by the legislator before the entry of the Czech Republic into the EU, which led to the emergence of the current situation, when membership in the EU is not adequately remembered. Also in view of the 20th anniversary of the Czech Republic’s accession to the EU, which falls in 2024, it is appropriate to introduce the above-mentioned important day with effect from January 1, 2025,” repeats Minister Martin Dvořák in the explanatory report.
The proposal to celebrate May 1st not only as Labor Day, but also as the Day of the Czech Republic’s accession to the European Union was already submitted by STAN deputies in the last election period. But they failed.
The calendar now commemorates 17 important days, among the entries in recent years are the renaming of November 17 as the Day of the Struggle for Freedom and Democracy and the International Student Day. The eighth of October became the Memorial Day of the Falconry and the 21st of August became the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Invasion and the Subsequent Occupation by the Warsaw Pact Troops.