Australia and New Zealand honour their war dead with dawn services on Anzac Day

Australia And New Zealand Honour Their War Dead With Dawn Services On Anzac Day
Australia Anzac Day, © Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved
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By Rod McGuirk, Associated Press

Hundreds of thousands of people gathered under a full moon across Australia and New Zealand for dawn services on Thursday to commemorate their war dead on Anzac Day.

New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon attended a service in his country’s largest city Auckland, while Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese saw the sun rise at a Second World War memorial in the wilds of Australia’s nearest neighbour, Papua New Guinea.


April 25 is the date in 1915 when the Australia and New Zealand Army Corps landed on the beaches of Gallipoli, in north-west Turkey, in an ill-fated campaign that was the soldiers’ first combat of the First World War.

Mr Albanese trekked to the memorial in the town of Isurava over two days with Papua New Guinea Prime Minister James Marape. Isurava was the site of a major battle where US and Australian troops fought the Japanese in August 1942.

Australia Anzac Day
Navy personnel march during the Anzac Day parade in the central business district of Sydney (Mark Baker/AP)


“Those who enlisted for the Second World War grew up in an Australia scarred by the memory of the first,” Nine Network reported Mr Albanese telling the gathering.

“Anzac Day has never asked us to exalt in the glories of war. Anzac Day asks us to stand against the erosion of time and to hold on to their names.”

Mr Marape called for “peace to prevail in all circumstances”.

Mr Albanese is using his trip to underscore enduring security ties between the two countries that deepened in December last year when he and Mr Marape signed a wide-ranging security agreement.



The signing was delayed by six months after a security pact between Papua New Guinea and the United States sparked riots in the South Pacific nation over concerns that the country’s sovereignty was being undermined.

Mr Marape said in December that his government’s security agreements with the US and Australia did not mean he was siding with those allies in their strategic competition with China.

China’s foreign minister Wang Yi visited Papua New Guinea at the weekend to discuss with Mr Marape building closer relations.


In New Zealand, Mr Luxon told the crowd that the country had to thank its military personnel for their freedom and democracy.

The Stuff news website reported Mr Luxon as saying: “It’s a sacred day for all New Zealanders.

“It’s a chance for us all to stop, to reflect, to remember, to commemorate great Kiwi service men and women in the past and present who have gone to stand up for our values.”

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