Poland has been remembering the tragic Warsaw uprising when thousands died in the doomed fightback against Nazi occupation in 1944.
The President-elect of Poland, Bronislaw Komorowski, led the tributes at the tomb of the unknown soldier.
The 66th anniversary marked the beginning of a 63- day battle that left 180,000 Poles dead and 80 per cent of the capital in ruins.
Sirens wailed during a minute-long pause to recall the brave but doomed effort the remnants of Poland’s Home Army made to liberate the city in the final days of World War II.
The Polish resistance fighters were poorly armed and heavily outnumbered and to this day their fight symbolises the struggle for freedom against impossible odds.
The retreating German army reduced the once elegant city – with a population of nearly one and a half million – to a burning shell which sheltered fewer than a thousand people.