Global commemorations mark 100th anniversary of end of World War One

World Today

FRANCE-WWI-POLITICS-HISTORY-CENTENARY-DIPLOMACYFrench President Emmanuel Macron attends a ceremony at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris on November 11, 2018 as part of commemorations marking the 100th anniversary of the 11 November 1918 armistice, ending World War I. (Photo by Ludovic MARIN / POOL / AFP)

Many gathered around the globe to mark a-hundred years since the end of the first world war. The Armistice came into force at the eleventh hour, on the eleventh day, of the eleventh month.Ten-decades later, leaders once on opposite sides, came together to mark the centenary. 

CGTN’s Stefan de Vries reports from Paris. 
Follow Stefan de Vries on Twitter @stefandevries

At  11 a.m. local time, all over the world, church bells marked the precise moment of the end of World War One, a century ago.

In Paris, French President Emmanuel Macron invited more than 60 world leaders to commemorate the 1918 event. They walked together, under overcast skies and drizzle, to the ceremony near the Arc de Triomphe.

United States President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, rivals today, shook hands. Their two countries were allies a hundred years ago. 

French President Macron then sent the world a clear message.

“Patriotism is the exact opposite of nationalism,” Macron said. “Sometimes, history threatens to retake its tragic course, and compromise the peace that we thought was forever.”

In another part of the city, preparations were under way for an anti-Trump protest.

British Prime Minister Theresa May and members of the Royal House, did not travel to France but marked the centennial in London.

Remi Piet on the 100th anniversary commemoration of World War One in Paris

And for the first time, a German president joined the ceremony. With thousands of others, Frank-Walter Steinmeier commemorated the end of the war which killed more than 16 million people, although the exact number will never be known.

Back in Paris, Macron told those in attendance, and perhaps to some in particular, that there are universal lessons to be drawn from World War One that multilateral international cooperation and not selfishness must prevail over rancor and resentment. 

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