President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic said on Wednesday at a ceremony marking the 95th anniversary of the Labin Republic (also known as the Albona Republic) that the events surrounding the history of the Albona Republic had a great meaning for the social and political history of Istria and the entire Croatia and had left a strong mark on national consciousness, heralding the future anti-fascist movement in Istria and its fight for integration with Croatia.
Addressing the ceremony, the president said that with the establishment of workers' self-rule in the Labin coal mines in 1921, Istrian workers had stood against the violent fascist regime, the first totalitarian regime of the 20th century. In March and April 1921, Labin was the scene of a miners' strike which quickly developed into an anti-fascist uprising, considered to be the first of its kind, and the declaration of the short-lived Labin Republic.
Grabar-Kitarovic underscored that many Italians and members of other ethnic minorities made their contribution to the movement. "We take pride in this heritage because Istria's anti-fascism was truly a people's movement."
Expressing satisfaction with the fact that this heritage will help the tourism development of the Labin area, the president said that the project for the reconstruction of Istrian coal mines would also have an educational purpose, notably when it came to children and young people.