From: Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Mailing List
Sent: Mon 25/04/2011 3:49 PM

AUSTRALIANS SHARE THE ANZAC SPIRIT

Australians across the globe have gathered to commemorate Anzac Day acknowledging those who have served and died for our country in war, conflicts and peace operations.

The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Warren Snowdon, was amongst the 6,500 people in Turkey today, to help mark the 96th anniversary of the Australian and New Zealand landings at Gallipoli.

The day began with a dawn service at North Beach, and was followed by a service at Lone Pine, the site of a battle where seven Australians were awarded the Victoria Cross.

“It was heartening to see so many Australians make the pilgrimage to Gallipoli to pause and reflect on the contribution made by some 50,000 service personnel that served in the campaign and honour the more than 8,700 who tragically lost their lives,” Mr Snowdon said.

“It is also important to acknowledge the considerable casualties suffered by troops from Britain, France, Turkey, Germany, Newfoundland (now Canada) and India.

“Anzac Day is our national day to remember all Australians who have experienced the horrors of war, from the Boer War to the conflicts of today, and to give thanks for the blessings of peace,” Mr Snowdon said.

More than 4,000 Australians attended the annual dawn service at the Australian National Memorial at Villers-Bretonneux, France. Thousands of Australians also attended services in London (United Kingdom), at the Menin Gate (Belgium), at Bomana War Cemetery and Isurava (Papua New Guinea), in Sandakan (Malaysia) and at Hellfire Pass (Thailand), to commemorate all Australians who served in various conflicts since Federation.

“Anzac Day continues to be a significant day of reflection and remembrance in the Australian national calendar. It is vitally important that the stories that helped form our national identity are passed down to generations to come.

“In many towns and cities across Australia thousands attended local services and marches. I would like to thank ex-service organisations and their members across Australia for their hard work in organising these events,” Mr Snowdon said.

For more information on Anzac Day visit the DVA Media Centre at www.dva.gov.au/media