31.08.2020 Events, History, History

Belfast commemorates 40 years of Polish Solidarity movement

Belfast City Hall and the MAC (Metropolitan Art Centre) have marked the 40th anniversary of the Polish Solidarity movement by lighting up their buildings.

Proposed by Alliance Councillor Michael Long – Belfast City Hall was lit up in the Polish national colours of red and white. The Solidarity logo was also beamed on to the MAC to commemorate the founding of the independent trade union in 1980.

Solidarity, Solidarność in Polish, made an important contribution to the dismantling of the authoritarian communist political regime in Poland and beyond.

Led by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Lech Walesa the trade union is renowned for its non-violent, practical diplomacy and created a precedent for peaceful transition into government.

The Polish community is the largest immigrant community in Northern Ireland and are the only European Union state with a consulate in Northern Ireland which opened in 2018. This is symbolic of the deep connection between the two countries and the important contribution, the approximately 30,000 Poles living in Northern Ireland make to society on a daily basis.

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