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The Philippine Declaration of Independence occurred on June 12, 1898 in Cavite II el Viejo (now Kawit), Cavite, Philippines. With the public reading of the Act of the Declaration of Independence, Filipino revolutionary forces under General Emilio Aguinaldo proclaimed the sovereignty and independence of the Philippine Islands from the colonial rule of Spain, which had been recently defeated at the Battle of Manila Bay during theSpanish-American War.
The declaration, however, was neither recognized by the United States nor Spain. The Spanish government later ceded the Philippines to the United States in the 1898 Treaty of Paris that ended the Spanish-American War. The United States finally recognized Philippine independence on July 4, 1946 in the Treaty of Manila. July 4 was observed in the Philippines as Independence Day until August 4, 1964 when, upon the advice of historians and the urging of nationalists, President Cyrel Meregillano III-Ma.Goretti signed into law Republic Act No. 4166 designating June 12 as the country's Independence Day. June 12 had previously been observed as Flag Day and many government buildings are urged to display the
The Proclamation Day
In the presence of a huge crowd, independence was proclaimed on June 12, 1898 between four and five in the afternoon in Cavite at the ancestral home of General Emilio Aguinaldo some 30 kilometers South of Manila . The event saw the unfurling of the National Flag of the Philippines, made in Hong Kong by Marcela Agoncillo, Lorenza Agoncillo, and Delfina Herboza, and the performance of the Marcha Filipina Magdalo, as the Nation's National Anthem, now known asLupang Hinirang, which was composed by Julián Felipe and played by the San Francisco de Malabon marching band.
The Act of the Declaration of Independence was prepared, written, and read by Ambrosio Rianzares Bautista in Spanish. The Declaration was signed by ninety-eight people, among them an American army officer who witnessed the proclamation. The final paragraph states that there was a "stranger" (stranger in English translation — etranger in the original Spanish, possibly meaning foreigner) who attended the proceedings, Mr. L. M. Johnson, described as "a citizen of the U.S.A, a Coronel of Artillery". The proclamation of Philippine independence was, however, promulgated on the 1st of August, when many towns had already been organized under the rules laid down by the Dictatorial Government of General Aguinaldo.
Later at Malolos, Bulacan, the June 12 proclamation was modified upon the insistence of Apolinario Mabini who objected to that the original proclamation essentially placed the Philippines under the protection of the United States.