On November 21 Ukraine is marking the start of what has become known as the Revolution of Dignity – the general name of mass protests in Ukraine that took place during November 2013 – February 2014, and resulted in the change of presidential power when the President Viktor Yanukovych, his family and the closest allies escaped from the country.
The holiday was established by a decree of President Petro Poroshenko issued on November 13, 2014. "Ukraine is a territory of dignity and freedom,” the president wrote in his decree. “We became so owning to not one but two revolutions – the Maidan of 2004, which was a Festival of Freedom, and the Revolution of 2013, the Revolution of Dignity. It was an extremely tough challenge for Ukraine when the Ukrainians demonstrated their Europeanness, dignity, their desire for freedom. I, as the President of Ukraine, have only to document this and to sign a decree on establishment of the Day of Dignity and Freedom, which Ukrainians now and forever will celebrate on November 21."
In late November 2013, the refusal of the Ukrainian government to sign an Association Agreement with the European Union became the root cause for mass protests, the largest in the modern history of the state. In particular, on November 21, 2013, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine made a decision to suspend the preparations for signing the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union, which was planned to be signed at the Vilnius Eastern Partnership Summit on November 28-29. After the "Berkut" riot police violently broke up student protests on the night of November 30, 2013, on Independence Square in Kyiv, hundreds of thousands of people poured into the streets in Ukrainian cities. The protests lasted from late November until the end of February 2014, being referred to as Euromaidan, Maidan, and later - the Revolution of Dignity.