In order to defend their independence, on the 4th of April of 1949 in Washington Belgium, Denmark, United Kingdom, Iceland, Italy, USA, Canada, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal and France singed The North Atlantic treaty. This was the beginning of the NATO. Since 1952 other countries began to join the organization as well. On the 29th of March of 2004 Lithuania has joined the NATO and this way secured its military safety. For a young nation this was a big step towards consolidating its independence. During this day Lithuanian flag is raised and many various events are organized.