Filipino-American Friendship Day

Filipino-American Friendship Day

Filipino-American Friendship Day

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Filipino-American Friendship Day, July 4, is a day in the Philippines designated by President Diosdado Macapagal to commemorate the liberation of the country by joint Filipino and American forces from the Japanese occupation at the end of World War II.

The Philippines was a U.S. territory from 1898 to 1946. Between 1941 and 1946, during World War II Japanese occupation, it remained a U.S. territory with a government in exile headed by Manuel Quezon initially located in Australia and later in the United States. A campaign to retake the country began in October 1944, when General Douglas McArthur landed in Leyte along with Sergio Osmena who had assumed the Philippine presidency after Quezon's death. The battles entailed long fierce fighting; some of the Japanese continued to fight until the official surrender of the Empire of Japan on September 2, 1945. The country gained complete independence on July 4, 1946.

Initially, the nation's Independence Day holiday (Araw ng Kalayaan) was held on July 4. Former President Diosdado Macapagal moved it to June 12, the date on which the Malolos Republic had declared independence from Spain in 1898. Filipino-American Friendship Day was created in its place, and it coincides with the United States's Independence Day on July 4.

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