President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky signed the law about renaming the Day of Defender of Ukraine to Day of Male and Female Defenders of Ukraine. Press department of the Office of the President reported that on August 3.
The explanatory note says that the previous official name of the holiday did not entirely reflect its meaning and essence; women have fought for Ukraine, too.
The holiday was first celebrated on October 14, 2015; it replaced the Soviet-era holiday observed on February 23. It also coincides with the Christian holiday of Intercession of the Holy Virgin. Ukraine's Cossacks believed that Our Lady is their defender and patron, and the Intercession symbolized a sort of heavenly shield, the protection from earthly foes.
In the 1940s, fighters of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army celebrated this holiday as well.