French Bastille Day celebrations
The French National Day is the anniversary of Storming of the Bastille during the French Revolution on July 14 1789.
French President Emmanuel Macron and Chief of the Defense Staff of the French Army General Francois Lecointre acknowledge the crowds from a command car during the military parade in the French capital. President Macron used France’s national day to urge European cooperation.
Down the Champs Elysees
The parade has been held on July 14 each year since 1880 on a route from the Arc de Triomphe down the Champs Elysees to the Place de la Concorde. Military bands lead the parade followed by cadets from military schools and various army, navy and air force divisions as flypasts continue overhead.
Merkel rises to the parade
Among those attending the celebrations was Chancellor Angela Merkel. Last year, she told the European Parliament a 'true European Army' would be better for NATO, and a more efficient partner for the United States.
French tricolor flag on Bastille Day
The French tricolor flag waves in the Sunday morning breeze as soldiers look on in front of the Arc de Triomphe. Bastille Day is celebrated on 14 July each year and in French it is officially known as la Fête nationale, défilé militaire du 14 juillet.
A French tank enters the scene. The Char Leclerc tank is being pointed in the right direction on the Champs Elysees. The tank is named after General Philippe Leclerc, considered a national hero for his actions in World War II.
Former French Jet Ski champion Franky Zapata flew above the Paris streets on the Flyboard Air he invented. The 2016 Guinness Book of Records awarded Zapata its title for longest hoverboard flight. He went almost 2.3 kilometres before landing.
Troops and defense spending
France has a defense budget of around $40.5 billion (€35.8 billion) with cyberdefense a major area of focus. It has a total military personnel of some 380,000 with 200,000 of them active, and 180,000 reservists.