First celebrated in 1993, 6 February has been an official flag day in Norway since 2004. The Nordic Sami conference specifically chose the date to commemorate the 6 February 1917 meeting in Trondheim, which was the first in history to gather Sami people from different countries.
This year is particularly special as it is the 100-year anniversary. County governments will collaborate with the Sami Council to arrange the event “Tråante 2017” in Trondheim from 5-12 February. His Majesty The King will be present on the day itself, as will Prime Minister Erna Solberg along with several other members of government.
The goal of the celebration is to spread awareness and knowledge about the diversity of Sami people, culture and history. By marking this important historical occasion, the wish is to move forward and focus on what can be done in the future for Sami people in Nordic countries.
Sami people are an ethnic group of indigenous people, mainly concentrated in the northern parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. In Norway, the Sami Council is an elected assembly that works with the government to improve the status of Sami people and preserve Sami culture and languages.
In a worldwide perspective, Norway has collaborated with organizations that work to advance the status of indigenous people across the world. The Climate and Forest Initiative of Norway has the goal of spending 100 million USD (600 million NOK) on advancing indigenous people’s rights in tropical forests by 2020. In Asia, Indonesian organizations are granted support to secure formal rights for indigenous people whose livelihoods depend on forests. Norway has also actively participated in the founding of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, as well as in the creation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.