Britain shy on celebratingbattle of Trafalgar defeat of France

9th April 2004, Comments 0 comments

LONDON, April 8 (AFP) - Britain's ministry of defence came under fire on Thursday for having postponed bicentenary commemorations of the battle of Trafalgar, which the opposition to Tony Blair's Labour government said was done to avoid offending the French.

LONDON, April 8 (AFP) - Britain's ministry of defence came under fire on Thursday for having postponed bicentenary commemorations of the battle of Trafalgar, which the opposition to Tony Blair's Labour government said was done to avoid offending the French.

"Trafalgar 200", a series of events to celebrate the English victory against Napoleon's armies, was originally scheduled to begin in two weeks.

But the kickoff has been pushed back to some time in May, officially because it might otherwise overshadow celebrations of the Entente Cordiale.

A member of parliament from the opposition Conservatives, Gerald Howarth, blasted the government's decision to delay the celebration.

In a column featured in the daily Evening Standard on Thursday, Howarth said Britain was "the only nation in the world to be embarrassed by its past achievements."

"The French will think we are absurd if we are hesitant about celebrating this military victory which saved Europe."

According to the defence ministry, several dates for "Trafalgar 200" have been proposed but none of them confirmed.

© AFP
       
                                                                 Subject: French news

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