Mexico will host Independence Day celebration and military parade despite the COVID-19 pandemic

Every year, around 100,000 people attend Independence Day celebrations at Mexico City’s Zócalo

Mexico will host Independence Day celebration and military parade despite the COVID-19 pandemic
In 1825, the first president of Mexico, Guadalupe Victoria declared September 16 as a holiday - Photo: Crisanta Espinosa Aguilar/CUARTOSCURO.COM
English 30/07/2020 15:18 Mexico City Actualizada 15:44

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Less than 40 days away from Independence Day, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador confirmed the government will organize an Independence Day ceremony on September 15 and a military parade on September 16 in Mexico, despite the surge in contagions and coronavirus-related deaths.

On July 29, during a news conference, President López Obrador announced his team is analyzing if people will be allowed the attend the celebrations amid the pandemic.
 
The Mexican President said the lottery will announce the winners of a raffle worth the presidential plane’s price on September 15.
 
When reported asked if people would be able to attend the celebrations, López Obrador said that although the celebrations will take place, it was still unknown if people will attend; however, in case it is open to the public, they would be required to maintain physical distance and follow other health measures.
 
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One day later, Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced people will be able to attend Independence Day celebrations. He explained attendees must follow physical distancing measures and that there will be 500 people at the Zócalo during the event. The attendees will represent the 32 states and will carry torches to send a message of hope amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

 
However, the president said the military parade won’t be the same because there will be fewer soldiers and marines than last year. He added this year’s parade will be a commemorative ceremony where fewer people will participate.

Every year, around 100,000 people attend Independence Day celebrations at Mexico City’s Zócalo on September 15. Meanwhile, around 400,000 people attend the military parade the next day. 

Mexico's Independence Day

On September 16, 1810, a priest named Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla called on people to rise against the colonial government the Spanish imposed in Mexico, therefore, he has been regarded as the “father” of the Independence movement. Miguel Hidalgo adopted the ideal of different independentist groups that extended throughout the country in 1809.

On that fateful night, “the father of the nation” rang the church's bell and called people to rise against the Spanish colonizers so that Mexico would become an independent country. In Dolores, a town located in the state of Guanajuato, Hidalgo pronounced his historical speech along with the words “Long live the Americas and death to the Spanish invaders!”.

The fight for Mexico's independence was first led by many heroes such as Hidalgo, Allende, Aldama, and Jiménez and continued thanks to José María Morelos, Hermenegildo Galeana, Mariano Matamoros, Vicente Guerrero, Leona Vicario, and thousands of women and men and after a long fight, Mexico became an independent country in 1821.

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Nevertheless, the rebels didn't plan to rise against the colonizers until October 1, 1810, but their plan was discovered by the colonial government on September 13.

Josefa Ortiz de Domínguez, the heroine who hosted the rebels at her home, warned Hidalgo and he decided to rise immediately and on September 16, at 5 a.m., Hidalgo called on the community to rise and fight for Mexico's independence. Hidalgo used the Virgin of Guadalupe as his banner.
 
Around 600 people armed with old rifles, machetes, sticks, and farming tools joined the rebels: farmers, workers, and artisans joined the movement.
 
In 1811, Hidalgo was captured by the enemy and was executed that same year.

Celebrating Mexican independence

In 1825, the first president of Mexico, Guadalupe Victoria declared September 16 as a holiday, nevertheless, president Porfirio Díaz changed the date and established that Mexico's Independence Day would be celebrated on September 16.

Since 1825, Mexico has celebrated its independence even when it was at war with the U.S. or France.

For decades, Mexico celebrates this date with a party in Mexico City's main square, the Zócalo, on September 15, where the president rings the Dolores church's bell and remembers the heroes.

The Dolores bell

The bell Miguel Hidalgo rang on September 16 has been preserved as one of the symbols of Mexico's independence. Nowadays, the bell is kept at the National Palace in Mexico City.

Every year, the Mexican president rings the bell to commemorate and remember the who made Mexico a free and independent country.
 
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