May 8 Ceremony : Macron revives the flame at the Arc de Triomphe

May 8 Ceremony : Macron revives the flame at the Arc de Triomphe


Emmanuel Macron celebrated the 74th anniversary of the victory against Nazism on May 8th, 1945, in the rain-laden Arc de Triomphe, in front of a sparse audience.

President Emmanuel Macron, surrounded by military leaders and representatives of veterans, resisters and deportees, laid a wreath and rekindled the flame at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the sound of the Marseillaise and Song of the partisans during the traditional ceremony May 8th.

His predecessors Nicolas Sarkozy (2007-2012) and François Hollande (2012-2017) figured in the audience that the president went to greet, including the members of the government. Young people were sitting in two stands on Place de l’Etoile.

The capitulation of the Third German Reich to the Allies, which took place on May 8, 1945, marked the end of the Second World War in Europe, the deadliest conflict in history.

  • A ritual

The ceremony began with a first wreath of the Head of State, at the foot of the statue located at the roundabout Champs-Elysees of his distant predecessor Charles de Gaulle, President of the Republic from 1958 to 1969 after being in 1940, the leader of the French resistance to Nazism.

Emmanuel Macron was accompanied by Prime Minister Édouard Philippe and Presidents of the National Assembly, Richard Ferrand, and the Senate Gérard Larcher. He spoke briefly with Yves de Gaulle, one of the General’s grandchildren.

He then went up the Avenue des Champs-Élysées by car to the Arc de Triomphe, escorted by the Republican Guard.

This presidential ritual at the Champs-Elysees was established after the declaration in 1981 of May 8 as a holiday, explains the executive on the site

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