Veterans celebrated across the continent they freed

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Veterans and world leaders have celebrated the men and women who liberated Europe 60 years ago in services across the continent.

Veterans and world leaders have celebrated the men and women who liberated Europe 60 years ago in services across the continent.

US President George Bush led the tributes, likening the Second World War veterans to the troops "bringing freedom" to Afghanistan, Iraq and the wider Middle East.

At Margraten US Military Cemetery in the Netherlands, Mr Bush said: "Americans and Europeans are continuing to work together and are bringing freedom and hope to places where it has long been denied."

In Paris, the French President, Jacques Chirac, laid flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier as jets flew over the Champs Élysées. In Prague, President Vaclav Klaus and thousands of others watched a parade.

And in Whitehall, the Prince of Wales was the first to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph yesterday. Many veterans felt the ceremony was too low key and complained that, unlike other European heads of government, the Prime Minister chose not to attend the national event.

With a Military Cross pinned to his uniform, a former Black Watch major, Peter Watson, 84, said: "It is an insult. It is a disgrace."

The Prime Minister and the Queen will attend a national celebration of the war's end on 10 July, between VE Day and VJ Day.

Comments