Burma's ruling military government has urged unity among the country's many ethnic groups, at a Union Day ceremony in the capital, Rangoon.
Union Day commemorates the signing of a 1947 agreement between ethnic leaders and the late independence hero General Aung San to resist British colonial rule.
A message from senior Burmese leader Than Shwe was read at a flag-raising ceremony. He urged people to help shape a peaceful, modern, developed democratic nation.
Opponents of the military issued their own statement criticizing the ongoing military-organized convention to draft a new constitution.
They accused Burma's leaders of trying to unilaterally draw up a constitution that would not guarantee democracy and human rights.
The convention is due to resume on Thursday. Burma has been ruled by a military dictatorship since the 1960s.
Information for this report is provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.