France wants to make D-Day beaches World Heritage site

PARIS, June 6 (Xinhua) -- French President Francois Hollande on Friday asked to recognize D-Day beaches in Normandy, north France as UNESCO World Heritage site.

"On the beaches of Normandy, souls of combatants are still floating. On these calm beaches, one wind blows. It's the wind of freedom. In the name of France, I wish the beaches will be listed as World Heritage by UNESCO," said Hollande during a ceremony in Sword beach in Ouistreham, northwestern France.

Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword are France's five beaches which witnessed the arrival of 156,000 American, British and Canadian forces on June 6, 1944.

Some 10,000 of foreign servicemen were killed on site, in an operation that helped to defeat Nazi forces seven decades ago.

Thousands of participants including 1,000 veterans and 19 heads of state and government on Friday took part in the ceremonies marking 70th anniversary of D-Day landings.