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Last Updated: Thursday, 14 June 2007, 23:08 GMT 00:08 UK
Services mark Falklands conflict
Baroness Thatcher, Cherie Blair, the Queen and Tony Blair
The Blairs and Baroness Thatcher joined the Queen for the service
Commemorations have taken place to mark the 25th anniversary of the liberation of the Falklands by UK armed forces.

The Queen, Tony Blair and Baroness Thatcher joined veterans for a remembrance service in the Falkland Islands Memorial Chapel in Berkshire.

A service in Stanley, attended by 1982 minister Lord Parkinson and Prince Edward, was among the Falklands events.

The war came to an end on 14 June 1982, two-and-half-months after the UK territory was invaded by Argentina.

Some 255 British servicemen, more than 650 Argentines and three islanders were killed in the 74-day conflict.

BBC correspondent Jack Izzard in Argentina said he expected a few veterans would lay wreaths but there would be no major commemorations.

Falklands memorial service
Once the service is finished and everybody comes out it is a chance to meet friends
Julian Ennis, veteran

People felt shame the war was lost but agreed with the policy of the current president the islands should be returned to Argentina, through diplomatic rather than aggressive means, he said.

Around half of the Falkland Islands' population of 3,000 attended a service, parade and wreath laying ceremony at Stanley's Liberation Monument.

The government was represented at the events on the island by armed forces minister Adam Ingram.

Among those at the service was Julian Ennis, a Royal Engineer who suffered 24% burns when the Sir Galahad was attacked by Argentine planes.

He told BBC News 24 remembering the conflict left him with mixed emotions.

"Once the service is finished and everybody comes out it is a chance to meet friends and you gather together the camaraderie of the task force."

Falklands memorial service
My memories of the Falklands War are that, just for once, this country stood up to be counted
Paul, Abingdon

In the UK, a flypast of four Joint Force Harriers - representing the Harrier squadrons from the time - saluted the Queen before the service of thanksgiving at Pangbourne College, near Reading.

The focus of the service, also attended by Defence Secretary Des Browne, was on those who lost their lives in the conflict.

Sara Jones, the widow of Colonel "H" Jones, commanding officer of 2 Para who was killed in the battle of Goose Green and posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his bravery, gave a reading.

The traditional act of remembrance was led by Rear Admiral Jeremy Sanders CB OBE, who served in the Falklands and two buglers from the band of HM Royal Marines then played the Last Post.

After the commemoration, the Queen placed a final stone from the Falklands - which was blessed during the service - on top of 254 other such stones, to form a memorial cairn.

It follows a Scottish tradition commemorating those who did not return from battle.

Special message

Events have also taken place across the UK.

The Princess Royal attended a Service of Remembrance and Commemoration followed by a "Heroes" dinner at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich.

Queen and Duke of Edinburgh arriving at Pangbourne Chapel
The Queen placed a stone to form a memorial cairn

She was joined by her husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence and Sara Jones as well as former soldiers, sailors and airmen who had been decorated for bravery during the conflict.

In Scotland, service personnel laid a wreath at the Scottish National War Memorial in Edinburgh before attending a special service at St Giles Cathedral.

Around 400 veterans led by a band of the Royal Marines took part in a parade, while two RAF Tornado jets performed a fly-past.

Neil Griffiths, of the Royal British Legion Scotland, said such a large number of Falklands veterans has never before gathered north of the border..




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Scenes from the war and memorial service





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