Solemn ceremony in Doha marks World War I centenary
November 11 2018 11:42 PM
Franck Gellet arriving to lay a wreathe in honour of the fallen heroes.
Franck Gellet arriving to lay a wreathe in honour of the fallen heroes. PICTURES: Ram Chand

Several diplomats serving in Qatar and Qatari defence and other officials paid glowing tributes to the millions of people who lost their lives in World War I (WWI), at a solemn ceremony held at Lycee Francais Bonaparte (French School Doha) in West Bay on Sunday.

The ceremony, organised by the French embassy, was held to mark the centenary of the end of WWI. It was observed in memory of the signing of the First World War Armistice on November 11, 1918. 
At the gathering Sunday, the ambassadors of a number of countries - including Franck Gellet of France - and a senior official from the Austrian embassy laid floral wreaths in honour of those who were killed in the war.

French ambassador Franck Gellet reading out French President Emmanuel Macron's message at the ceremony yesterday. PICTURES: Ram Chand

The event in progress

A number of other ambassadors and diplomats representing various countries were also present at the event. 
The ceremony coincided with the ongoing Paris Peace Forum in the French capital, attended by heads of States of more than 70 countries from across the world - including His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani - and representatives of many international forums.
Besides the singing of the French national anthem by students of the French school, a minute's silence was observed in memory of those killed in the war. The ceremony also included the formal reading of letters written by French soldiers during the war. 
One of the letters, penned by a brigadier identified as Taupiac to his friend a few months after the war began in 1914, narrated some of the horrifying experiences he and other soldiers encountered during the war.
Towards the end, French ambassador Gellet read out a message for the centenary of the armistice from the President of France, Emmanuel Macron.
In Paris, President Macron led tributes to the millions of soldiers killed in WWI on Sunday, using an emotional ceremony in Paris attended by scores of world leaders to warn against nationalism a century on from the conflict.

Last updated: November 11 2018 11:45 PM

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