Gun Salutes are customarily fired for giving military honours during the official visits of foreign heads of states, at military parades, state and military celebrations as well as for marking special occasions on certain days of the year in the Republic of Serbia.
Nowadays, gun salutes are fired according to the order of the President of the Republic of Serbia the day before the four national holidays: the Statehood Day of the Republic of Serbia – 15th February, Serbian Armed Forces Day – 23rd April, Victory day – 9th May and Armistice Day – 11th November.
The Office of the President defines the place and the time, weapons and a number of volley guns. It used to depend on the importance of the holiday, so the citizens of Belgrade still remember when 10 volley guns were fired from 12 weapons. Nowadays, it is a habit to fire 10 volley guns from 6 weapons.
The Gun Salutes have always been followed by ceremonious activities – it starts with the flag rising command and the anthem is played. After that the gun salutes order given by the President of the Republic is read. Then the officer who is in charge of the gun salutes gives order to fire gun salutes with as many volley guns as it was ordered by the President.
The flag raising and reading the order lasts about three minutes – just before the firing – and the first volley gun is fired at the exactly ordered time. After that the flag is lowered.
The purpose of the gun salutes is to announce the ceremony of civil and military holidays, connecting the past to the present by recalling the important historical moments.
On 16th August 1807 guns salutes were fired on Belgrade Fortress in order to greet the arrival of Dositej Obradovic in already six months free Belgrade.
When a memorial of Prince Mihailo was unveiled in 1882 there were gun salutes and church bells were ringing and it was the first big celebration after the Proclamation of the Kingdom.
On 6th September 1923, 101 volley guns were fired from Belgrade Fortress to mark the birth of heir to the throne Petar II Karadjordjevic.
After the World War II ending on 29th November 1945 the gun salutes were fired to mark establishment of the new Yugoslavia.