Ukraine was celebrating Independence Day. President Viktor Yushchenko opened the official ceremonies together with prayer for Ukraine in the St. Sofia Cathedral. Patriarchs of different denominations took part in it.

According to the president's idea, the celebration was humanitarian, and it differed this time from the traditional ceremony of a military nature. "The ideological foundation of this holiday is the idea of mutual understanding and reconciliation, unity,' it was mentioned in a statement of the presidential press service.

Following the 'Prayers for Ukraine' mass Yuschenko, Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko and Verkhovna Rada Chairman Volodymyr Lytvyn laid flowers to the monuments of Prime Volodymyr, the poet Taras Shevchenko and historian Mykhailo Hrushevskyi.

The main event of the day was the President's address to the people, which he delivered at the Maidan Nezalezhnosti at about 12:00.

"He as President wants to spend this day with the people who gained independence,' it was mentioned in the statement of the presidential press service. Yuschenko conferred state awards in the Mariinskyi Palace on this day.

The celebration came to an end with an official reception of the President in the courtyard of the Sofia Kyivska national park with music being provided by the Kyivska Kamerata national chamber orchestra and the chamber choir Kyiv.

Yushchenko offered a celebratory toast, and later the guests had the opportunity to informally interact with the president. With this the Secretariat decided to turn away from the traditional receptions in the Ukraina Palace.

There was firework in the evening at about 22:00. The First National Channel showed all events with the participation of the head of state.

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