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The Companion of the Liberation Communities

Edict_No._7, which created the Order of the Liberation specifies that the Order is meant to "reward individuals, military and civil organizations for outstanding service in the effort to procure the liberation of France and the French Empire". General De Gaulle, thus awarded the Cross of the Liberation to five French communities:

The first cit that received the Cross of the Liberation was Nantes, on November 11th, 1941, and later Grenoble in May of 1944. Following the first two were: Paris, in March of 1945, accompanied with the following note of praise, "A capital city that is loyal to itself and to the rest of France"; a village called Vassieux-en-Vercors, in August of 1945 - 72 villagers were massacred and all of its houses were burned by a merciless enemy; finally, the city of Ile de Sein - in June of 1940, almost the entire male population old enough to go to war chose to go and join the Free French Forces in England.


On the initiative taken by general Jean Simon, Chancellor of the Order, the five cities decided to come together by making a friendship agreement, aimed at ensuring continuity of the Order and creating special ties between their respective inhabitants and associations. This agreement was ratified on December 3rd, 1981, by Mr. Jacques Chirac (Mayor of Paris), Mr. Hubert Dubedout (Mayor of Grenoble), Alain Chenard (Mayor of Nantes), Alain Le Roy (Mayor of Ile de Sein), Jacques Roux (Mayor of Vassieux-en-Vercors).

The five mayors also decided to create an "Association of the five Companion of the Liberation Communities", with each one of the mayors taking turns to preside the Association, and with the aim to "ensure the continuity of the traditions of the Order of the Liberation and to preserve the memory of the Companions who are deceased; to organize - on June 18th and November 9th of each year - ceremonies to commemorate the historic Appeal and the death of General De Gaulle; attend to the Museum and the archives of the Order of the Liberation in due course".

In the future, when most of the Companions of the Liberation will be gone, these five communities will play an important role in ensuring the continuity of the Order of the Liberation, thanks to the institution of a Council provided for by the Law of 26 May 1999: the National Council of "Companion of the Liberation" Communities.