German troops stationed in France for first time since Second World War

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A battalion of German combat troops is to be officially stationed in eastern France on Friday for the first time since Nazi forces ended the Reich's occupation at the end of the Second World War.

The battalion, part of the joint Franco-German Brigade, will be stationed at Illkirch-Graffenstaden outside Strasbourg, near the German border, and will eventually consist of 600 soldiers.

The historic move, aimed at cementing friendship between the neighbours who fought three devastating wars in 140 years, was agreed by French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at a Munich summit in 2009.

A ceremony to mark the event on Friday is to be attended by French Defence Minister Alain Juppe and his German counterpart Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg....

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