Portugal commemorates the Carnation Revolution

Every year on April 25 Portugal celebrates the anniversary of the Carnation Revolution of 1974 - a military coup that put an end to the dictatorship and initiated the transition to democracy, freedom and European integration. The Portuguese press takes stock 48 years on.

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TSF (PT) /

Freedom gained without bloodshed

Portugal did well to shake off its old imperial ambitions back then, says TSF:

“If there were any doubts in Portuguese society about the significance of 25 April, today it suffices to look at the 480-kilometre battlefront in Donbass to realise that our greatest victory was the conquest of freedom and the respective transition to democracy achieved peacefully and without bloodshed. ... Portugal achieved its goal of creating a Western-style democracy with autonomous institutions and a free press. Despite the painful process, decolonisation was accomplished. Today Portugal no longer has any colonies - nor does it want any.”

Jornal de Notícias (PT) /

Democracy must be lived

For Jornal de Notícias the freedoms won represent a constant challenge:

“Although the doors that April opened are unequivocal, many promises remain unfulfilled: a more equitable society, constant renewal of the conditions of civic participation, and firm commitment to qualifications and culture. Politics is always action, whether it is exercised in parliament or in a neighbourhood association. Freedom is not preached, it is lived. Celebrating the Revolution is not a rhetorical exercise, much less an evocative or historical one. It is the recognition of the fact that so many freedoms continue to be trampled underfoot.”