King Albert II Leads the Armistice Day Ceremony

  November 11, 2009 at 11:31 am by

King Albert II led the Royal Family and Government officials in solemn commemoration ceremonies in Brussels today.

The King, Prime Minister Herman Van Rompuy and Belgian veterans placed wreaths at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Thousands turned out to pay their respects to the fallen heroes. At exactly 11:00, people paused for two minutes silence to mark the 91st anniversary of the end of The Great War.

His Majesty talked to the veterans and thanked them once again for their great sacrifices. He also stressed how important it is to remember all the heroes who gave their lives during World War I and preserve their memory.

In Ieper (better known by its French name, Ypres), tens of thousands of people lined the streets of the town, which was left in ruins during The Great War. Ieper is now a world symbol of peace.

Eight Belgian fire brigade buglers led a solemn last post ceremony at the Menin Gate war memorial. The Menin Gate has the names of 55 000 missing soldiers engraved on its limestone walls. According to authorities, some 500 000 people a year visit memorials and battlefields in Flanders, and the number increases as the 100th anniversary of World War I approaches.

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