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YEREVAN, September 21 (Itar-Tass) — Armenia marks the 20th anniversary of the republic's independence on Wednesday. This day twenty years ago a referendum was held here, with 99 percent of participants voted in favour of the republic's independent status in the light of the apparent break-up of the Soviet Union.
A military parade of the Armed Forces of Armenia is to be held in the Republic Square here on Wednesday, with a unit from the Russian military base participating in it for the first time in the history of the country's independence. The base is located in the territory of the republic in accordance with the interstate treaty.
A "Heroic Ballad" concert and performance will be held in the square in the evening. During the performance, the main episodes of Armenia's history -- from the ancient times to our days -- will be projected on huge screens in consonance with classical music by Armenian composers. French specialists arrived in Yerevan to arrange this festival of light and music, which will continue for one hour and 20 minutes.
Ceremonies marking the opening of a number of new facilities were held on the occasion of the jubilee. Those are a new building of the the Matenadaran ancient manuscripts research institute, a new terminal of Yerevan's international airport Zvartnots, and a new cycling track in the capital of Armenia.
The Central Bank of Armenia has issued a silver commemorative coin while the Republican Ministry of Transport and Communications issued a postage stamp dedicated to the jubilee.
A forum of leaders and members of organizaitons of the Armenian diaspora abroad was held here on the eve of the jubilee. Participants in the forum were invited to watch today's military march-past.
A concert of the Symphony Orchestra of the State Maryinsky Theater under the baton of famous Russian conductor Valery Gergiyev was a great success here on Monday night.
Present-day independent Armenia is an active participant in the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and is a member of the United Nations Organization, the Council of Europe, and other international organizations.