21 April 2015
The Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant General Tim Keating, says it’s a privilege to be attending commemorations on the Gallipoli peninsula this Saturday.
He is one of 500 New Zealand Defence Force personnel representing New Zealand at Anzac Day ceremonies across the world this weekend.
“This Saturday 100 years ago, New Zealand and Australian soldiers went into their first major joint military action, a campaign that introduced the name Gallipoli and the word Anzac, and has come to be synonymous with duty and sacrifice.
“April the 25th each year in both countries also commemorates the contribution and sacrifice of men and women in conflicts and peace keeping roles since then.”
As well as commemorating the 100th anniversary of the landings at Gallipoli and attending the Dawn Service there, LTGEN Keating’s programme includes the Australian service at Lone Pine, the Turkish service at the 57th Regiment Memorial, and the New Zealand service at Chunuk Bair.
His programme also includes participation in the Turkish international, Commonwealth and Irish, and French memorial services. He will also visit Beach Cemetery.
“While we are remembering those who have gone before us, we also think of Anzac Day as an opportunity to remember and acknowledge the service of the current generation of people in the New Zealand Defence Force.
“Right now there are many Defence Force personnel either serving, or about to deploy, on operations around the world. Anzac Day is also an acknowledgement of their contribution,” says LTGEN Keating.
In New Zealand, NZDF personnel will be supporting 400 Anzac Day-related events across the country including the programme of events focused on the new Pukeahu National War Memorial Park in Wellington.
Many hundreds of other Defence personnel are also travelling to their home towns and regions to attend commemorations.
LTGEN Keating departs for Gallipoli today.
For further information contact the Defence Communications Group: 021 487 980