Keti Koti

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Kwakoe statue in Paramaribo, representing a former slave whose chains are cut

Keti Koti (Sranantongo for "the chains are cut"), July 1, is the Emancipation Day (end of slavery) in Suriname. The day is also known as (Prisiri) Maspasi, meaning "Emancipation (Festival)".

Slavery was abolished by the Netherlands in Suriname and the Dutch Antilles in 1863. However, slaves in Suriname would not be fully free until 1873, after a mandatory 10 year transition period during which time they were required to work on the plantations for minimal pay and without state sanctioned torture. After 1873 many slaves left the plantations where they had suffered for several generations, in favor of the city of Paramaribo. In 2009 several cities in the Netherlands hosted various activities, making this day a day of national celebration and remembrance throughout the country.

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