France has been celebrating its National Day, July 14, with the traditional military display along the Champs Elysee in Paris.
A total of 5,000 foot soldiers and 240 on horseback joined colleagues representing all aspects of the French military in the centre of the capital in front of their President and assembled foreign dignitaries.
Amidst it all Nicolas Sarkozy remembered French involvement in Afghanistan and those who recently lost their lives.
“The withdrawal of forces will begin this year and will continue until 2013. We’re facing extremely brutal terrorist acts there. Those who carry them out will have to answer for their actions,” he said.
The Foreign Legion sang as they marched.
It was a chance for France to remember their servicemen and women seeing action both in Afghanistan and also in Ivory Coast.
Three hundred military vehicles and scores of aircraft also took part. The planes trailed coloured smoke, painting the French tricolour in the skies over Paris.