International Day of Francophonie

Today is the Day of the French Language or the International Day of Francophonie. Francophonie (with a capital "F") is an institutional mechanism for organising relations between countries united by the French language. The multilateral Francophonie, initiated by its founding fathers (Léopold Cédar Senghor, Habib Bourguiba, Amani Diori and Norodom), began in 1970, in Niamey when the Agency for Cultural and Technical Cooperation (ACTC) was created, which became the Intergovernmental Agency of the Francophonie in 1998, and then the International Organisation of the Francophonie (OIF) in 2005. Its main objective is to promote the French language and cooperation among the 88 member States and Governments of OIF. This objective is enshrined in the Charter of Francophonie, adopted in 1997 at the Hanoi Summit and revised in 2005 by the Conference of Ministers of Francophonie in Antananarivo.

The biennial summits of Heads of State and Government, acting as the supreme body of the Francophone community's institutional structure, have added political issues (peace, democracy, human rights), sustainable development, economic and digital cooperation to the original areas of Francophone cooperation - French language, culture and education. Together, these tasks define the raison d'être of the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie. The OIF has its slogan: “Equality, complementarity, solidarity (égalité, complémentarité, solidarité). The organisation has different levels of membership depending on the prevalence of the French language on the territory of the countries and the level of links with France.

Celebrated on five continents, the festival has become a permanent meeting place for people that love French culture in many countries and is being organised on an ever-increasing scale. For example, there are "Encounters with Francophonie" in Canada, "Francofete" in Quebec, "Festi'phonie" (Festival of Francophonie) in Cameroon. In France, Switzerland, Belgium and other countries, the festival is represented by the "Week of the French Language". The day ends with numerous concert performances.

The celebration lasts for several days. Since 2020, French diplomatic missions abroad have been invited to display the IOF flag on the occasion of International Francophonie Day.