A solemn ceremony was held on Friday in Ypres, Western Flanders, to mark the 98th anniversary of the World War I Armistice. The speaker of the Flemish Parliament, Jan Peumans, the Governor of Western Flanders, Carl Decaluwé, and Ypres Mayor Jan Dumez, rendered homage at the ceremony to the victims of the world’s first global conflict.
The commemoration day began with a ceremony at the French cemetery, St-Charles de Potyze, followed by a Eucharistic celebration in the Saint Martin Cathedral. Delegations and divisions from various parts of the world then participated in the Poppy Parade that ended at the memorial at the Menin Gate.
The president of the Last Post, an association that keeps alive the memory of the First World War, stressed the importance of not forgetting. “Many parallels can be drawn between 1914, 1939 and today,” he said. “Lessons have to be learned.”
Mayor Dumez also referred to today’s conflagrations. “The conflict is no longer in Ypres, but in Mossul, Aleppo and Palmyra,” he said. “There is still a long way to go. It is our duty” not to forget.