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Sunday, 11 November, 2001, 12:35 GMT
Britain honours war dead
Queen Elizabeth
The Queen laid the first wreath
The Queen led the nation's tributes to the war dead at the annual service of remembrance in London on Sunday.

The service was attended for the first time by the US ambassador in London, William Farrish, who was invited to take part following the 11 September terror attacks.

Representatives of Commonwealth governments are normally the only foreign officials who attend.

New York fire chief Joe Callan, who survived the collapse of the World Trade Center, also marched alongside British firefighters to the Cenotaph.

We will remember other people who died - the victims of 11 September

Tony Blair

Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day were commemorated on the same day for the first time since 1990.

And thousands of onlookers gathered to watch as around 10,000 war veterans and former servicemen and women, organised by the Royal British Legion, marched in a sombre parade.

Detachments from the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the Army, the Territorial Army, the Royal Air Force (RAF), the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, the Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets, the Coastguard and the Merchant Air Service also gathered.

Also taking part were 2,200 civilians representing organisations connected with past conflicts, including the War Widows' Association, the Princess Mary Royal Air Force Nursing Service, Queen Alexandra's Royal Naval Nursing Service, the Women's Royal Voluntary Service, St John Ambulance, the British Red Cross and the Police, Fire, Ambulance, and Prison Services.

The Massed Bands of the Guards Division and the Pipes and Drums of the 1st Battalion Scots Guards, played a selection of music, including Rule Britannia, to start the service.

The Bands of the Royal Marines and the RAF, Buglers of the Royal Marines, Trumpeters of the RAF were also present.

Last Post

At 1100GMT - the time the World War I armistice came into place on 11 November 1918 - a two-minute silence was heralded by a single cannon shot.

Trumpeters playing the Last Post ended the silence before the Queen headed the traditional wreath laying ceremony on behalf of the nation.

Prince Philip, Prince Charles, Prince Andrew, Princess Anne and Prince Michael also laid poppy wreaths at the foot of the 1920 monument, which remembers "The Glorious Dead".

And one was laid on behalf of the Queen Mother, who has had to miss the parade for the past two years due to ill health.

Laying wreaths

The 101-year-old watched the ceremony from a balcony of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office building.

Her brother, Fergus, was killed in World War I serving with the Black Watch at Loos in 1915.

Mr Blair then led politicians including opposition leader Iain Duncan Smith and Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy in laying wreaths before officials from Commonwealth countries paid their respects.

And the leaders of the Army, Navy and RAF each laid a wreath before the parade joined in prayer.

US victims remembered

Since the end of World War I 83 years ago, numerous British service men and women have died in 70 conflicts and peace keeping missions around the globe.

Tony Blair
Tony Blair: "Evil of global terrorism"
Sunday's service was also an opportunity for people to remember the victims of the US terror attacks.

Mr Blair has drawn poignant parallels between the 11 November armistice and the 11 September atrocities.

He said that while remembering those who fought in the two world wars in the traditional two-minute silence, "we will remember other people who died - the victims of 11 September".

Writing in the Mail on Sunday, he said: "Several thousand died on that terrible day.

"Every one was somebody's son, somebody's daughter.

"Every one was murdered by an evil which we must fight - the evil of global terrorism.

"With the pace of modern life, memories can be short. We move on. We get on with our lives.

"But we should never forget what happened on 11 September.

"Never forget the sickness we felt as it dawned on us that this was no accident."

The BBC's Jennie Bond
"The Queen led the nation in remembering the fallen"
The BBC's Nick Thatcher in Westminster
speaks to Diane Myers from the Womens section of the Royal British Legion
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