On the first days of 1988, Armenia started its evident attack against Azerbaijan. Basing on the indifferent attitude of Moscow and particularly of M.Gorbachov's, the head of the USSR, Armenians started planned mass deportation of Azerbaijanis from their native lands in Armenia under the directions of the Armenian government. Above 200 000 Azerbaijanis deported from their homes, killed and burned by the Armenians. There was no reaction to the Armenian vandalism by M. Gorbachov and his surrounding. At early February 1988 Armenians carried out revolts in the region Nagorny Karabakh of Azerbaijan and even raise a question to join those lands to Armenia.
People of Azerbaijan expressed its protest to the government. Slogans, portraits and flags carried by the Azerbaijani citizens proved their belief to Moscow and local authorities at that time.
But getting no serious answer from Moscow and the that-time government, people from every corner of the republic moved to Baku and gathered in Azadlig square (named Lenin Square at that time), they held meetings and evidently express their protest.
On the 17th of November, 1988 the society of Azerbaijan started meeting at Azadlig square in the protest of anti-Azerbaijan policy of the Soviet state. People gathered in a single power and started a movement for freedom. The soviet army destroyed national meeting at the beginning of December. The abovementioned events are evaluated as the national movement in Azerbaijan and considered to be important facts in the achievement of independence.
November 17 is celebrated as the Day of National Revival since 1992.
From 2006, if a holiday falls on the weekend, then the next working day counts as a holiday.