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D-Day 75th anniversary: Emmanuel Macron reads last letter of French Resistance fighter

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D-Day 75th anniversary: Emmanuel Macron reads last letter of French Resistance fighter
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REUTERS
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World leaders have marked the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings by reading first-hand testimonies from those who took part in the start of the campaign to liberate France.

French president Emmanuel Macron read from a letter sent by a young resistance fighter, Henri Fertet, before he was executed at the age of 16.

The letter said: "I am going to die for my country. I want France to be free and the French to be happy."

Queen Elizabeth II, US President Donald Trump, other leaders of the wartime Allies — as well as German Chancellor Angela Merkel — joined some 300 World War II veterans at the seaside ceremony in Portsmouth in southern England on Wednesday.

More than 10,000 Allied troops who were killed or injured in the offensive which ended in Allied forces marching into Berlin 10 months later.

British and US troops landed on the five Normandy beaches overnight between 5 and 6 June 1944 where they fought to reclaim land inch by inch from the Nazis.

The French resistance helped by acting as spies and sabotage key German infrastructure such as railway lines in the run-up to the battle as well as helping to treat the wounded on the day.