World leaders to mark 70th anniversary of D-Day landings
Thursday, May 29, 2014 - 01:40
May 29 - Ukraine's president-elect Petro Poroshenko will join world leaders, including Russia's Putin, for the 70th anniversary of the World War Two ''D-Day'' landings in Normandy. Vanessa Johnston reports.
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It has almost been 70 years since Allied troops crossed the English Channel and invaded the French coast at Normandy, spelling the beginning of the end for Nazi Germany.
World leaders are preparing to mark the occasion with a lunch on June 6th.
Attendees of the D-Day anniversary will include U.S. President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Ukraine's president-elect Petro Poroshenko and Russia's Putin will also be there.
Should the two men come face-to-face it would be the first time Russia's president meets a pro-Western Ukrainian politician since Moscow's annexation of Crimea in March.
The D-Day landings on June 6, 1944, resulted in approximately 6,000 American casualties, as well as 4,300 British and Canadian deaths.
German casualties are unknown but are estimated to be somewhere between 4,000 and 9,000.
The Allied onslaught would bring Adolf Hitler's German empire to its knees less than twelve months later.
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