Foto: Marie Enoksson
Foto: Marie Enoksson

One flag - one people

The Sami people live in four countries and have no national state of their own, but the Sami flag has been flying in Norway, Finland, Russia and Sweden since 1986.

The joint flag dates back to 1986. It was then that it was approved by the Nordic Sami Council at a conference in Åre. The flag was designed by Astrid Båhl from Skibotn in Norway, and neither the colours nor the symbols are there by chance.

The circle is a symbol for both the sun and the moon. The sun circle is red and the moon circle is blue. The flag's colours - red, blue, green and yellow - are the same as in the traditional Sami costume, the kolt.

In 1992, the Nordic Sami Conference in Helsinki decided on the official Sami flag-flying days. The flag-flying days have subsequently been extended. In Sweden, many municipalities in the Sami region fly both the Sami and the Swedish flag.

Flag-flying days

6 February The Sami National Day, which is celebrated in memory of the first Sami Congress in Trondheim in 1917.

2 March The Sami Parliament in Finland was reorganised and newly-inaugurated in 1996.

25 March Marie Bebådelse Day, a traditional Sami festival day.

Midsummer Day Official festival day.

9 August The United Nations International Indigenous People's Day.

15 August The Sami flag was approved on this day in 1986.

18 August The Sami Council was founded on this day in 1956.

26 August The Sami Parliament in Sweden was inaugurated on this day in 1993.

9 October The Sami Parliament in Norway was inaugurated on this day in 1989.

9 November The Delegation for Sami Affairs in Finland was inaugurated on this day in 1973.

15 November Isak Sabas was born on this day in 1875. He wrote the text for what subsequently became the Sami national anthem.

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