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Watch: Finland pays homage to Defence Forces with Flag Day parade

Finland's first flag day since joining Nato features a flyover of aircraft from the Defence Forces.

The broadcast of the Defence Forces' Flag Day parade.
Yle News

The Flag Day parade of the Finnish Defence Forces took place on Sunday in Jyväskylä.

A flag raising ceremony began the day honouring the Defence Forces at 8am followed by a wreath laying ceremony and a church service.

The parade itself started at noon at the Harju stadium in Jyväskylä and was received by Commander of the Air Force Major General Juha-Pekka Keränen. The parade troops will be commanded by the Air Force's Chief of Staff Brigadier General Timo Herranen.

There were about 1,100 troops in the parade and the procession included more than 30 vehicles. In addition to Jyväskylä, units from Hämeenlinna and Kouvola participated in the parade.

Military equipment was also on display in Lutakonaukio in Jyväskylä from 10am until 4pm.

President Niinistö sends regards

President Sauli Niinistö — who is the Commander-in-Chief of the Finnish Defence Forces — issued the Order of the Day for the celebration, pointing to the importance of Finland joining Nato earlier this year.

"Joining the defence alliance Nato started a new era in our country's history. Finland will continue to be defended first and foremost by Finns, but we will do it together with our allies. Finland's most significant contribution to Nato's joint deterrence and defence will be the defence of our own territory," Niinistö stated in the order.

This Flag Day marks the first since Finland became a member of the defence alliance.

Aircraft flyover

The flypast featured Air Force F/A-18C Hornet fighters, Pilatus light transport aircraft and Army helicopters.

According to the original plan, the Air Force's exhibition unit Midnight Hawks were set to perform over Jyväskylä on Sunday, however the Hawk training jets were grounded after an accident in May.

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