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CUTBACKS

Austerity to take the shine off National Day military parade

No tanks or traditional flyover this year in order to make savings of 60 percent

The government's austerity drive will see much of the pomp and circumstance removed from the traditional military parade in Madrid that will mark this year's national holiday on October 12.

The Defense Ministry on Wednesday said there will be no tanks or planes on display, with the overall cost of the procession scaled back by over 60 percent from last year's level to one million euros. The traditional flyover is the most spectacular element of the parade and brings out crowds to see fighter planes and other military aircraft rip though the capital’s skies. The king, prime minister and senior members of the government, opposition and diplomats attend the parade each year.

"The celebration of National Day will be marked by austerity and sobriety," military sources said. "It is a question of combining the solemnity of the occasion with the combined effort being made by Spanish society to overcome the crisis."

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