World Festival of Youth and Students

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The World Festival of Youth and Students is an international event, organized by the World Federation of Democratic Youth (WFDY), a left-wing youth organization, jointly with the International Union of Students since 1947.

The largest festival was the 6th, held in 1957 in Moscow, when 34,000 young people from 131 countries attended the event. This festival also marked the international debut of the song "Moscow Nights", which subsequently went on to become perhaps the most widely recognized Russian song in the world. In terms of the number of the attending countries, the largest festival was the 13th, held in 1989 in Pyongyang, North Korea, when 177 countries attended the event.

During the Cold War many festivals were held in capitals of Socialist countries because of the enormous expenditure and coordination required to support a youth festival. As a result, by the 1960s the festivals were accused by the US State Department of being a tool of Communist propaganda.[1]

The 17th festival was held in Pretoria, South Africa, on December 13–21, 2010, and the 18th festival was held in Quito, Ecuador, on December 7–13, 2013.


Edition Year Logo Host City Participants Countries Motto
1st 1947 Fmje-1.jpg Czechoslovakia Prague 17,000 71 "Youth Unite, Forward for Lasting Peace!"
2nd 1949 Fmje-2.jpg Hungary Budapest 20,000 82 "Youth Unite, Forward for Lasting Peace, Democracy, National Independence and a better future for the people"
3rd 1951
Bundesarchiv Bild 183-10013-0001, III. Weltfestspiele, Emblem.jpg
East Germany East Berlin 26,000 104 "For Peace and Friendship – Against Nuclear Weapons"
4th 1953 Fmje-4.jpg Romania Bucharest 30,000 111 "No! Our generation will not serve death and destruction!."
5th 1955 Fmje-5.jpg Poland Warsaw 30,000 114 "For Peace and Friendship – Against the Aggressive Imperialist Pacts"
6th 1957 Fmje-6.jpg Soviet Union Moscow 34,000 131 "For Peace and Friendship"
7th 1959 Fmje-7.jpg Austria Vienna 18,000 112 "For Peace and Friendship and Peaceful Coexistence"
8th 1962 Fmje-8.jpg Finland Helsinki 18,000 137 "For Peace and Friendship"
9th 1968 Fmje-9.jpg Bulgaria Sofia 20,000 138 "For Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
10th 1973 East Germany East Berlin 25,600 140 "For Anti-Imperialist Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
11th 1978 Fmje-11.jpg Cuba Havana 18,500 145 "For Anti-Imperialist Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
12th 1985
Soviet Union Moscow 26,000 157 "For Anti-Imperialist Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
13th 1989 Fmje-13.jpg North Korea Pyongyang 22,000 177 "For Anti-Imperialist Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
14th 1997 Fmje-14.jpg Cuba Havana 12,325 136 "For Anti-Imperialist Solidarity, Peace and Friendship"
15th 2001 Fmje-15.jpg Algeria Algiers 6,500 110 "Let’s Globalize the Struggle For Peace, Solidarity, Development, Against Imperialism"
16th 2005 Venezuela Caracas 17,000 144 "For Peace and Solidarity, We Struggle Against Imperialism and War"
17th 2010 South Africa Pretoria 15,000 126 "Let's Defeat Imperialism, for a World of Peace, Solidarity and Social Transformation!"
18th 2013 Ecuador Quito 8,500 80[2] "Youth Unite Against Imperialism, for a World of Peace, Solidarity and Social Transformation!"
19th 2017 Russia Sochi TBD 150 "For Peace, Solidarity and Social Justice, we Struggle against Imperialism - Honoring our past, we build the future!!!"



  1. ^ John C. Clews (1964) Communist Propaganda techniques, printed in the USA by Praeger and in Great Britain
  2. ^ "El festival busca que los jóvenes tengan presencia". 

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