Liberation Day celebrated with music and marches

The Netherlands celebrates Liberation Day on Saturday, marking 67 years since Germany surrendered at the end of World War II.

The celebrations started in Wageningen around midnight where the Liberation flame was lit and torches were then taken by runners to other fires all over the country. The theme of this year’s event is ‘freedom, pass it on’.
Germany signed the capitulation documents in Wageningen on May 5, 1945. The south of the country had been liberated months earlier.
Later on Saturday, the university town stages its traditional military parade, featuring veterans and their vehicles, a parachute drop and gun salute.
Fourteen formal Liberation Day festivals are being staged all over the country: one in each of 12 provinces and one in The Hague and Amsterdam. Dutch artists Alain Clark, Nick & Simon and Go Back To The Zoo will make a whistle stop tour of the 14 festivals.
Queen Beatrix will attend the traditional Amstel concert on Saturday night, together with German president Joachim Gauck, who gave this year’s May 5 lecture in Breda on Saturday morning.
In his speech, Gauck spoke of how honoured he was to be asked to give the lecture. ‘On days like these we become more aware .. of how much freedom and the rule of law have become part of the European social order,’ he said.

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