Venezuela Celebrates 200 Years of the Anti-Colonialist Battle of Carabobo

An international solidarity meeting accompanied the Battle of Carabobo celebrations while reinforcing the continental anti-imperialist struggle.

By Andreína Chávez Alava

Guayaquil, Ecuador, June 24, 2021 (venezuelanalysis.com) – Venezuela celebrated the 200th anniversary of the decisive anti-colonialist Battle of Carabobo with a civic-military parade and a number of cultural events.

The Battle of Carabobo was the climax of the Venezuelan Independence War (1810-1823). Fought on June 24, 1821, Simón Bolívar and the patriotic army’s victory secured the country’s liberation from Spanish rule after over 300 years of constant indigenous resistance and slave rebellions against the colonizers.

Simón Bolívar's military strategy and superior forces defeated the enemy in 45 minutes, with only 300 losses, while the royalists counted around 3,000. Bolívar's “Liberating Army” went on to lead the South America liberation campaign that saw the independence of Perú, Bolivia and Ecuador, in his pursuit for continental unity and emancipation.

One of the key figures in the Battle of Carabobo was Pedro Camejo, known as “Negro Primero,” born into slavery and the only high-ranking Afro-Venezuelan official in the independence forces. A beloved hero within the Venezuelan Afro-descendant community, Camejo's legacy was rescued by Hugo Chávez’ Bolivarian Revolution.

The historic landmark's commemorations began Thursday at midnight with fireworks, followed by a formal ceremony at Caracas's National Pantheon to pay tribute to Simón Bolívar. Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino López stated that Venezuela would continue to be an "example of dignity" in the struggle for sovereignty amidst foreign aggressions.

Likewise, a traditional civic-military parade took place in the Carabobo Battlefield, located in Carabobo state, where the historic battle occurred 200 years ago. President Nicolás Maduro stressed how Carabobo was key to “end 300 years of Spanish rule.”

"South America's independence began with the victory in the Battle of Carabobo. It paved the way for Pichincha, Bomboná, Junín, Ayacucho [other decisive battles]," he said.

An orchestra concert, theater displays, the premiere of the national audiovisual production "Carabobo, freedom paths," a monument unveiling, artistic murals painted across the country and a host of other cultural events likewise marked the bicentenary celebrations.

To reinforce international solidarity, Venezuela also hosted the Bicentenary Peoples' Congress between June 21-24. Delegates from 123 countries debated global politics, the crisis of capitalism, US sanctions, the Covid-19 pandemic and collective action while participating in the celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Carabobo.

Additionally, Caracas held the XIX Summit of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) to discuss integration mechanisms in the current regional context. The event also paid tribute to the Battle of Carabobo bicentenary.

Edited by Ricardo Vaz from Mérida.

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