Paris was ultimately freed on August 24-25, 1944, by a combination of troops from France, the United States and resistance fighters of many nationalities. As word spread around the streets that the Nazi military garrison in the capital had surrendered, crowds erupted. LIFE photographer Ralph Morse, now 96 years old, was there to document the scene. A series of his photographs have been published on LIFE.com. Click here to view all the photos.
PARIS – President Francois Hollande has kicked off a day of commemorations for the 70th anniversary of the liberation of France in World War II.
Unfazed by a downpour on Ile de Sein island in Brittany, Hollande made a speech Monday recalling the scores of locals who joined Gen. Charles de Gaulle's expatriate administration in London after the Nazi invasion in 1940.
Hollande made no reference to an announcement from his office earlier in the day that Prime Minister Manuel Valls has been instructed to shake-up the Socialist Cabinet by Tuesday, following criticism of its economic policies by the economy minister.
Later, Hollande was to attend ceremonies at the Paris police prefecture and City Hall in recognition of the Aug. 25, 1944, liberation of the capital by American and French troops.