THURSDAY, February 29, 2024

Australian, New Zealand embassies jointly host virtual Anzac Day commemorative service

Australian, New Zealand embassies jointly host virtual Anzac Day commemorative service

To commemorate those Australians and New Zealanders who have served and died in wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations, the Australian and New Zealand embassies came together to jointly host the 2021 virtual Anzac Day Commemorative Service at the Australian Embassy, Bangkok.

The service was recorded and broadcast via the embassy’s Facebook Page "Australian Embassy, Thailand" at 1.30pm on Sunday.

Due to Covid-19 considerations, the Australian government had announced there would be no government-led public overseas Anzac Day services in 2021, including in Thailand.

Still, given the significance of the Anzac Day to Australians and New Zealanders alike, the Australian and New Zealand embassies decided to hold a small, private, commemorative service to mark the occasion, they said.

The service was conducted following local authority health guidelines on Covid-19.

Allan McKinnon, Australia's ambassador to Thailand, reiterated the importance of Anzac Day for the Australian and New Zealand communities in Thailand. “Anzac Day is a day on which all Australians and New Zealanders in Thailand can join us in pausing, reflecting, and remembering the sacrifice of those who have served, those who continue to serve, and those who will serve in the future.”

James Andersen, Chargé d' Affaires from the New Zealand Embassy to Thailand, Laos and Cambodia, said Anzac Day continued to retain significance, many years after the first Anzacs landed at Gallipoli. “Anzac Day continues to underline how we have a collective responsibility to uphold the values of justice, freedom, peace and respect for human dignity as we remind ourselves that Australians and New Zealanders have given their lives for these values.”

On April 25 each year, Australians throughout the world commemorate Anzac Day, marking the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the World War I.

It was on April 25, 1915 that Australian and New Zealand soldiers first landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula, in Turkey, as part of a larger Allied Force. Facing fierce resistance and near-impossible fighting conditions in battles that lasted for months, many did not return home.