Thousands of people took part in military parades in Antananarivo, Madagascar on Saturday and Sunday (25 and 26 June) to celebrate the 17th anniversary of independence, and the second anniversary of the country becoming a Democratic Republic.
GV Head of State,Didier Ratsirake reviews guard of honour at stadium.
SV Guard of honour
SV Soldiers march past. (3 shots)
TV PAN Armoured personnel carriers past followed by other vehicles as officials watch. (4 shots)
SV Anti-aircraft guns towed past. (2 shots)
GV Portrait of president formed by crowd in stadium using coloured paper.
GV Stadium, dancers in foreground, as people picture changes.
GV Performers in stadium waving red flags as Chinese visitors look on. (3 shots)
GTV Agricultural workers parading as crowds look on. (3 shots)
TV Troops run into stadium and form up. (3 shots)
Initials VS 16.00
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Background: Thousands of people took part in military parades in Antananarivo, Madagascar on Saturday and Sunday (25 and 26 June) to celebrate the 17th anniversary of independence, and the second anniversary of the country becoming a Democratic Republic.
SYNAPSIS: Presiding over the military parade was Madagascar's Head of State, Mr. Didier Ratsiraka. He inspected a guard of honour before the parade began. Madagascar became independent in 1960, following more than 60 years of French rule. After thirteen years of presidential government, control of the country was taken over by military leaders in 1972. That control dissolved two years ago when Mr. Ratsiraka became Head of State. The army plays a major role in the economic development of the country. Parades like this are common in socialist countries, which emphasise the need for young people to work closely with other active forces of the nation.
The army was showing off its newly-acquired equipment -- including North Korean anti-aircraft guns -- for the first time. The display was organised by North Korean military technicians and the Madagascar Ministry for Youth.
Attending the parade were a number of government ministers and foreign diplomats. One of them was Mr. Paul Berenger, general secretary of the Mauritius Militant Movement. A delegation from the Congo was led by the Minister of State, M. Pierre Anga. Madagascar is politically peaceful now, tow years after the assassination of the then head of state, Richard Ratsimandrava, who met his death only six days after assuming power. Last year, the Government was re-organised, and the country's name was altered from the Malagasy Republic to the Democratic Republic of Madagascar.