First Minister Peter Robinson has said he is eternally grateful to the men and women from Northern Ireland who played their part in the D-Day landings.
The leader of Stormont's five-party power-sharing administration is attending services in Bayeux Cathedral, Bayeux Cemetery and an international ceremony at Sword Beach on the Normandy coast.
The head of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) said he was deeply honoured to be there for the 70th anniversary of the Allied invasion of Nazi-occupied Europe.
He said: "We must never forget the bravery, courage and sacrifice of those thousands of soldiers who fought and for the many who ultimately gave their lives for all of us. It is right that those veterans are central to today's commemorations.
"Northern Ireland provided a staging platform for allied forces prior to the D-Day landings.
"We are all eternally grateful to the men and women of Northern Ireland who played their part in one of the most significant engagements in military history."