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France to mark Battle of Verdun, symbol of French suffering

French soldiers launch an attack from their trenches during the Battle of Verdun in 1916France marks the centenary of the start of the Battle of Verdun — the longest battle of World War I which became a symbol of the country’s suffering — on Sunday, focusing on educating the young rather than honouring veterans. Today, Verdun is no longer a memory, it is history,” said Thierry Hubscher, director of the Verdun Memorial, which has been renovated for the centenary. A strong point on the long frontline dividing the French and German armies, Verdun in northeastern France was the target of a German offensive whose aim — according to commander-in-chief Erich von Falkenhayn — was to “bleed France dry”.

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