Cairo Tower illuminated on Tuesday with the tricolour flag, red-blue-orange, of the Republic of Armenia celebrating 30 years of its independence
The Gezira Cairo Tower was illuminated with the tricolour flag of Armenia on 21 September to mark 30 years on the republic's independence from the Soviet Union.
The event, organised in cooperation with the Armenian Embassy in Cairo, saw the tower lit in red, blue, and orange.
Members of the Armenian community in Egypt celebrated the event by taking Nile feluccas to watch up close the tricolour flag on the tower. Others visited the tower grounds to take photos, which they later shared on social media.
Armenia’s first independence, on 28 May 1918, following the Russian Revolution lasted until April 1921, but it was at that time that the new constitution adopted the tricolour flag.
The flag was re-adopted in August 1990 when the nation proclaimed independence and a declaration was announced.
Expressing the united will of the Armenian people, the declaration of independence was issued jointly by the Supreme Council of the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic (ASSR) and the Supreme Council of the Republic of Armenia (RA).
The statement was signed by president of the RA Council Levon Ter-Petrossian, who became the first president of the country after its independence, and Ara Sahakyan, secretary of the council.
The first point/rule of the declaration read: "The Armenian SSR is renamed the Republic of Armenia (Armenia). The Republic of Armenia shall have its flag, coat of arms, and anthem."
The colours of the flag are symbolic. Red stands for the blood shed by Armenians throughout its dark history, blue for the unchanging will of the nation surviving under a peaceful sky, and orange for its people’s talent and hardwork.
Armenians have been residing in Egypt since the eighth century CE. Their numbers increased during the 12th to 16th centuries, and a community was formed in the 19th century after the genocide by the Ottoman Turks.
The first wave of Armenian refugees escaping the genocide arrived in Port Fouad on 15 September 1915, when four French warships, including the Guichen, and one British naval vessel transported 4,231 survivors to the port where they lived peacefully until some of them were able to return to their homes in 1919.
Today the community stands at 5000, mainly residing in Cairo and Alexandria. The contributions Armenians have made to Egypt are too numerous to mention.