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PICTURES: Dresden Marks Allied Bombing Anniversary With Peace Chain

BERLIN (AP) — Thousands of people have formed a human chain in Dresden in a message of “peace and reconciliation” marking the anniversary of the deadly Allied firebombing of the eastern German city near the end of World War II.

The dpa news agency reported that Mayor Dirk Hilbert told the crowd linking hands across the Elbe River bridge to remember the past as they view conflicts today where “human dignity is trampled underfoot.”

Hilbert placed a white rose on a memorial to the attack by Allied bombers on Feb. 13-14, 1945. Some 25,000 people are believed to have died in the bombing, according to a 2008 official study.

Hilbert also recalled the crimes of the Nazis, and said people must remember all “the human suffering that war brings.”

DRESDEN, GERMANY - FEBRUARY 13: People form a human chain across from the rebuilt, historic city center to both commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the Dresden firebombing and to make a statement against right-wing groups who seek to use the anniversary for political ends on February 13, 2017 in Dresden, Germany. In the February 13-14, 1945, attack on Dresden Allied bombers obliterated the city center in a carefully planned firestorm that killed at least 25,000 people only a few months before the end of World War II. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

People form a human chain across from the rebuilt, historic city center to both commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the Dresden firebombing and to make a statement against right-wing groups who seek to use the anniversary for political ends on February 13, 2017 in Dresden, Germany. (Sean Gallup/Getty)

DRESDEN, GERMANY - FEBRUARY 13:  People hold hands to form a human chain across from the rebuilt, historic city center to both commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the Dresden firebombing and to make a statement against right-wing groups who seek to use the anniversary for political ends on February 13, 2017 in Dresden, Germany. In the February 13-14, 1945, attack on Dresden Allied bombers obliterated the city center in a carefully planned firestorm that killed at least 25,000 people only a few months before the end of World War II.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

People hold hands to form a human chain across from the rebuilt, historic city center to both commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the Dresden firebombing and to make a statement against right-wing groups who seek to use the anniversary for political ends on February 13, 2017 in Dresden, Germany. (Sean Gallup/Getty)

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