BRUSSELS, June 26 (Xinhua) -- European Union (EU) leaders gathered in Belgian city of Ypres on Thursday to commemorate the outbreak of World War I 100 years ago.
The leaders of France, Germany, Britain and the other member states of the EU, together with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and European Council President Herman Van Rompuy laid a floral wreath and inaugurate the "Peace bench" at the Menin Gate.
The city in western Flanders is symbolic as it experienced the pan-European battles a hundred years ago.
On the battlefields of Flanders, Europeans slaughtered each other with machine guns, artillery and poison gas. Ypres was the first place poison gas was used in warfare, where over a half-million soldiers lost their lives.