SUKHUM / AQW'A ― On April 25, Circassians worldwide celebrate Adyghe (Circassian) Flag Day, aimed at preserving and reviving folk traditions and customs, promoting knowledge of their ethnic group's history, national symbols, and unity.
In Abkhazia, celebrations commenced in the morning in the village of Barmysh, Gudauta region. Participants, including representatives from the State Committee for Youth Affairs and Sports, Adyghe diaspora, Adyghe Khase [a Circassian community organisation -ed.] leadership, and youth organizations, laid flowers at the Circassian-Abkhazian Brotherhood Monument. In Sukhum, at the Makhajirs Embankment, archery competitions were held with 28 participants from the Abkhazia shooting club.
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Annually, Abkhazia hosts events dedicated to Adyghe Flag Day. "Every year, we organize festive events to honour the Adyghe (Circassian) flag, symbolizing the unity of history and traditions for the entire Adyghe people. This evening, we plan a flag procession from Sergey Bagapsh Square to the square in front of the Abkhaz Drama Theatre, where a festive concert featuring creative teams from Adyghea and Abkhazia will take place," said the State Committee for Youth and Sports. The festivities will conclude with traditional Circassian gathering, known as Adyghe Dzhegu.
Honouring the Adyghe Flag: A Day of Unity and Tradition in Sukhum
A solemn procession commemorating the Day of the Adyghe (Circassian) Flag unfolded along the Mukhadzhir Embankment in Sukhum, bringing together communities in a vibrant display of unity and heritage. Participants in the procession, carrying both Adyghe and Abkhazian flags, marched from the square named after Sergey Bagapsh to the square situated in front of the Abkhaz Drama Theater. Here, a concert featuring artistic ensembles from Adyghea and Abkhazia took place.
Approximately 60 attendees joined the celebration, including members of the Adyghe diaspora, descendants of mukhadzhirs (repatriates) from Turkey and Syria, local residents, and visitors to the capital. Many participants were adorned in traditional Caucasian national costumes, further emphasising the cultural pride on display.
Tarash Khagba, Chairman of the State Committee for Youth Affairs, greeted the audience before the concert began. He congratulated the Adyghe people on Flag Day and wished them peace, goodness, and prosperity. Valery Maremkulov, Chairman of the Circassian Association, expressed gratitude to the State Committee for Youth Affairs and Sports for their support in organizing the event, stating, "Today is one of the most significant days for the Circassians. Many thanks to the State Committee for supporting such an event."
Rismag Adzhindzhal, adviser to the president on cooperation with North Caucasus veteran volunteers, highlighted the importance of national symbols. "The Abkhazian flag alternates green and white stripes. In addition to our Abkhazian flag, we have a beloved and equally dear Adyghe flag. Every nation can succeed when it has its own symbols. The Adyghe flag holds a special place in my heart," he said.
The celebration culminated in traditional Circassian songs and dances, known as Adyghe dzhegu, further uniting the communities and paying homage to their shared cultural roots.
Circassian Flag Day, celebrated since 2010, features concerts, horseback riding, motor races, sports competitions, and other festivities organized by the Adyghe (Circassian) community in the Republic of Adyghea, Kabardino-Balkaria Republic, and Karachay-Cherkess Republic. Circassian diaspora in over 50 countries worldwide also join in celebrating this occasion.