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World leaders gather to remember D-Day

By Julian Shea in London | China Daily Global | Updated: 2019-06-06 00:14

May hosts international gathering to honor historic war sacrifice

Worlds leaders pose for a family photo ahead of the D-day 75 Commemorations event in Portsmouth, Britain, on Wednesday. [Photo/Agencies]

The Queen and British Prime Minister Theresa May led commemorative events on the south coast of England on Wednesday to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in Northern France in World War II.

Tens of thousands of spectators, as well as around 300 veterans of the conflict who are now more than 90 years old, gathered for the event on Southsea Common. Further events will be staged in France on Thursday, the anniversary of the landings taking place.

In one of the final acts of her premiership before stepping down on Friday, May hosted the leaders of 15 countries that fought alongside the UK, including US President Donald Trump, who was on the last day of a three-day state visit to the country. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also attended.

May called D-Day "a moment of historic international cooperation".

"It is right that at the heart of today's commemorations are the veterans who fought to secure the liberty and the peace that we now enjoy," she continued.

"The global challenges we face today are different in their origin and nature. But as we confront new and evolving threats to our security it is more important than ever that we continue to stand together in upholding our shared values and way of life.

Speaking of the sacrifice made by troops on D-Day, she said: "their solidarity and determination in the defense of our freedom remains a lesson to us all. And we will continue to stand up for the values of democracy, justice and tolerance that so many died to preserve."

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