About Keti Koti
Keti Koti means ‘broken chains’ in the Surinamese language Sranantongo.
Keti Koti marks the date when slavery was abolished in Suriname and in the Dutch Antilles in 1863. However, enslaved people would not be fully free until 1873, after a mandatory 10-year transition period during which time they were required to work on the plantations for minimal pay and without the state-sanctioned torture that was part of slavery. In the Netherlands, Suriname and in The Dutch Antilles historical slavery is commemorated and the abolition of slavery is celebrated on July 1st.
July 1st is a national commemoration in the Netherlands, but not a national day off.
Keti Koti has been celebrated in various Dutch cities on July 1st since 2002. The national remembrance ceremony takes place in Amsterdam’s Oosterpark from 1pm and is broadcast live on television. The ceremony includes a minute’s silence and wreath-laying.Find out more