As every year on August 1, people in Warsaw stopped to the sound of sirens and bells at exactly 5 p.m. to remember "W Hour," the time when the insurgency began in the dark days of German occupation.
Pedestrians froze, cars, motorcycles, trams and buses stopped for one minute when the clock struck five on Sunday.
Also, a few thousand people gathered at one of Warsaw's main roundabouts, Rondo Dmowskiego, to mark the annual moment of silence, remembering the largest military act of resistance in the German-occupied Europe during World War II.
Red and white smoke was sent above the crowds that gathered at Rondo Dmowskiego, one of Warsaw's main roundabouts, to mark the 77th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising. Photo:PAP/Wojciech Olkuśnik
The day's official commemorations culminated in Warsaw's Powazki Military Cemetery, where President Andrzej Duda, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and Mayor of Warsaw Rafał Trzaskowski joined a group of veterans at the 5 pm tribute.
Following custom, wreaths were laid by the three dignitaries at the Gloria Victis Monument (Glory to the Vanquished), which commemorates those who fell in the rising.
On the eve of the Sunday commemorations, representatives of the Association of Warsaw Insurgents issued an appeal in which they urged the younger generations to "cherish the values of freedom and sovereignty."
The 1944 uprising lasted 63 days before it was put down by better equipped and more numerous German forces.
Some 20,000 fighters of the Polish Home Army resistance movement took up arms in 1944. Around 18,000 insurgents and some Polish 150,000-180,000 civilians were killed, according to Poland's Institute of National Remembrance (IPN).